I am always being asked by new small businesses or e-commerce shops about the tools we use for shipping. If you are not a small business or e-commerce shop, skip this post because it won't apply to you at all!
After years of printing labels, cutting them out and taping them to a package I finally had enough. I felt like I was wasting so much time.
The alternative, a label printer, seemed like SO MUCH money to spend. At the time, we decided to try sticker paper, that would at least eliminate having to tape the labels to the packages. But that paper is so expensive, and the printer was running our of ink fast. So we took the plunge, and ordered a label printer.
It to this day is the single best purchase we made for the business
*please note this post contains affiliate links, but all opinions are my own*
Not only does it print super fast, it uses heat not ink to print the labels, so the only thing you need to replace are the labels when they run out.
The printer itself comes with software which is helpful when you need to print a basic address label, but it's compatible with all shipping services. When I started using the printer it worked printing labels via Etsy perfectly. Now we use ShipStation and it works seamlessly there as well.
When it comes to buying labels we started out using the name brand ones. EXPENSIVE. So we figured it was worth it to try the off - brand labels and we loved them. Not only are the off brand labels significantly cheaper, they are a little lighter and seem to adhere to the packages better.
These are the labels we use for the Dymo LabelWriter 4XL.
I believe this does void the warranty of the printer, not using Dymo brand labels. However, we purchased the label printer in 2013 and we haven't had a single issue with it (that I couldn't fix).
The only issues I have experienced are most likely my fault. A few times some sticky label has gotten around the roller and caused a jam. A minor surgery later it's working just fine.
The last thing that you should have is a scale. I wouldn't waste your money on this, it doesn't need to be fancy. This is the scale that we have.
The investment may seem like a lot, especially when you are just starting out. I thought the same thing. BUT I promise you, no regrets on this!