As a small business owner, you know the importance of cutting costs whenever and wherever. But there’s always the same challenge: reduce expenses while maintaining quality. You want your consumers to have the best product and service at the cheapest possible price—but how do you make that happen?
Often, business owners first look at ways to curtail expenditure through the cost of goods sold (COGS). This can directly impact the quality of the product, though.
Next, business owners look at ways to slash spending with their services by reducing salaries, losing workers, or minimizing offerings for customers. Again, this directly impacts the quality and value of the product for the consumer.
Most small businesses tend to forget the extraordinary expenses of transportation and shipping costs. This cost sits in your Excel file of outlays, and you likely take that number for what it is. Business owners often make the mistake of assuming that the shipping is the least controllable expense. Even if you have a strong relationship with a shipper or trucking company, you generally don’t have control over the expense it costs to send your goods from California to New York.
But transportation costs are more than that, and they can often be one of the highest forms of overhead in any small business. Don’t make the mistake of accepting these costs at face value.
There are solutions to minimizing transportation and shipping expenses:
- You can shop around and compare prices of different carriers. Regional carriers may have better prices for local businesses.
- Invest in prepaid shipping for discounted rates. Leverage flat rate shipping to avoid the variability of shipping costs.
- Consider third-party transportation insurance.
- Look into hybrid services or 3PL companies.
- Invest in shipping technology to cut down on workload.
One of the simplest and fastest ways to reduce these costs that you can do today? Invest in a quality label maker.
Below we have our top 5 commercial label printers to reduce your expenses and simplify your business:
Top 5 Commercial Label Printers
|Qualities||Rollo Shipping Label Printer||DYMO LabelWriter||Brother QL-700||DYMO 450 Twin Turbo||Brother Network Ready QL-1060N|
|Printing Speed||150 mm/s||53 labels per min; 129 high-capacity per min||93 labels per min||71 labels per min||69 labels per min (4.3" per sec)|
|Label Size||Up to 4" x 6"||Up to 4.1" x 6.275"||Up to 2.4" wide, 3 feet long||Up to 2.25" wide, continuous tape||Up to 4" wide|
|Compatibility||eBay, Etsy, Amazon, Shopify & most shipping platforms and delivery services||Most selling and shipping platforms; QuickBooks, Microsoft Office, MAC address Book||Plug and Label works with most software on your computer||Most PC and Mac software capability||Microsoft Office compatibility|
|Additional Software||N/A||DYMO software suite for personalization and branding||P-Touch Editor for templates and customized labels||N/A||P-Touch Editor V5 with three modes; Snap Function, Express, Professional|
|Customer Service||5-star service by phone, email, or remote desktop; how-to instructional videos||Available but not consistent||Free technical support for life of machine||Available but not consistent||Free Technical Support|
|Best For||Saving Money||Customization||Versatility||Quick Printing||Shared, High-Volume Printing|
The Rollo Shipping Label Printer is one of our top picks because of its high speed and low cost. This printer works with any Thermal Direct Label, including free UPS labels. This can save you a significant amount of money on labels, because you can use any (free) label that works with direct thermal printing. Thermal printers also don’t require toner or ink, which saves you even more money.
The Rollo is a high-speed printer, printing at 150 mm/s. If you have several packages to go out at once, you don’t want to be sitting by the printer waiting for each label to come out. You want fast, efficient, and clean. This Rollo label printer will instantly print out 4×6” labels for shipping, warehouse, barcodes, IDs, FBA, bulk mailing, and inventory.
It’s also compatible with third party shippers and online platforms. It works with ShipStation, ShipGater, ShippingEasy, Shippo, and Shipworks; if you use a third-party to simplify your transportation, the Rollo printer will cut out yet another step for a seamless shipment process. You can also use it with ecommerce platforms like Etsy, eBay, Amazon, and Shopify in order to quickly move from customer info and invoice to gorgeous label. The printer creates labels that are acceptable for FedEx, UPS, and USPS shipping, so you can get quality transportation at low cost.
Additionally, users love Rollo’s 5-star U.S.-based customer service. Rollo support is available by phone, email, and remote-desktop, and they almost always answer with thorough responses in minutes. If you are having trouble with your printer, your labels, or even your shipping in general, Rollo is there to help you. The label printer also comes with short how-to videos that simplify training and implementation.
Plus, it’s small and portable—perfect for a small workspace or home office! At approximately $140, the Rollo Shipping Label Printer is guaranteed to save you money and headaches.
The DYMO LabelWriter is one of the highest rated label makers on Amazon with almost 1,000 five star reviews. It prints everything from shipping labels to file tags in an easy, personalized way. The printer also has a 53 per minute speed, but a 129 high capacity speed, making it one of the fastest per-line printers on the market. The strong 300 dpi resolution gives it a professional and clean aesthetic.
It’s a wide format printer, which means it’s great for XL labels for shipping, warehouse, and even international transport. The printer can support up to 4.1 x 6.275 labels at high speed and quality. It has thermal printing technology, so there’s again no need to pay extra for expensive ink or toner.
It’s the best machine for high-volume mailing, asset identification, and barcoding thanks to the DYMO software that comes free with the purchase of the LabelWriter.
This software suite comes with logos, graphics, and layouts that allow you to personalize your label. With over 60 styles, you can “brand” your labels to match the look and feel of your company. This is especially crucial in today’s ever-changing market, which calls for consistent, cohesive branding. Having a unique shipping layout will add an extra detail that boosts customer satisfaction further.
Additionally, the DYMO productivity software lets you pull information and fonts from other third-party software like QuickBooks, Microsoft Office, Mac Address Book, and more. This makes importing customer or recipient information a snap.
The DYMO LabelWriter also works well with almost all selling platforms and shipping carriers, including PayPal, USPS, FedEx, DHL, and UPS. You can quickly print multiple shipping labels at one time, or use the QuickPrint Widget to instantly print a single label from an attached address.
DYMO is one of the best labelers on the market, with years of experience and innovation. There’s no wonder this DYMO LabelWriter has so many amazing reviews!
The Brother QL-700 is highly versatile. It can print everything from employee ID badges to shipping labels to birthday banners. This Brother will print large or small with labels up to 2.4” wide, making it great for all sorts of labeling needs. It can also print with continuous-length paper or film tapes up to 3 feet long, so it’s great for banners and signs. It’s even able to print stamps with the PB Smart Postage application, saving you a trip to the post office.
These cost-effective, high-resolution labels print at a high speed of 93 labels per minute. The Brother QL-700 has an automatic cutter between labels for precise sizing, whether you’re printing one or multiple labels at a time. The Brother labels are pre-sized, easy-peel, with rounded-corners, so you don’t have to spend any time or frustration trying to peel labels from their backing. You’ll also save time thanks to the quick and easy drop-in label rolls that switch in a second.
There are two ways to print labels. The Editor Lite button launches the built-in Plug and Label software on your PC or Mac, so you can type and print basic labels without any additional software. You can also create custom labels with a variety of templates with the P-Touch Editor, which gives you even more versatility of use.
The Brother QL-700 is reliable and usable. It also has a 2-year warranty with toll-free technical support for the entire life of your product.
Another product by DYMO is the LabelWriter 450 Twin Turbo. This is great for small businesses because it will save you time printing everything you need—all at once. It can print address or shipping labels, file folder labels, barcodes, name badges, and so much more.
It will print up to 2.25” wide at 71 labels per minute. Although these are smaller labels, they can still work for shipping most packages—and it has less waste. It can hold 2 spools of label paper and will automatically switch to the second roll when the first as gone, so you don’t have to switch rolls as often. You can set it to print and let it go!
The Twin Turbo doesn’t require any fancy software or capabilities. It’s super easy to learn how to use—it’s like the “everyman’s” printer. Most reviewers even say it only takes about 1 hour to set up. You can also easily connect it to your PC or Mac and print homemade labels from Word, Excel, Outlook, QuickBooks, and any other label programs you use. This makes the Twin Turbo great for one-person businesses who want an inexpensive but effective, easy-to-use printer.
It also uses thermal printing so you don’t have to invest in expensive ink or toner. You will need to buy quality labels, though. Unfortunately, it does get some label jams due to the two spools. It’s also not the best printer for postage, as some individuals have found that it occasionally misprints stamps.
Nevertheless, the DYMO 450 Twin Turbo is your best choice if you are a small business looking for an easy, fast label maker that requires no extra effort or time on your part.
This Brother QL-1060N is the most tech-savvy label printer you’ll find. It’s “network ready,” meaning that it has a built-in wired Ethernet port so the printer can be shared with everyone on the same network. This makes it great for companies with multiple employees who need to share the label maker—without sharing the same computer.
The B-PAC API (application programming interface) allows developers to create their own label templates with text, numbers, graphics, logos, and barcodes. This makes it the most customizable label printers on this list—it just takes a little extra tech knowledge.
But you don’t need a lot of experience for easy personalization and branding of printed labels with the Brother QL-1060N. It also has intuitive P-Touch Editor V5 software, so you can easily create your own labels from a variety of templates. Every individual in your company can use it no matter their skill level due to the three editing modes: Snap Function, Express Mode, and Professional Mode. It will also integrate with Microsoft Office programs like Microsoft Excel, Word, and Outlook.
Making it even easier to use, the Brother QL-1060N will automatically detect the size and type of label roll. It can adjust the on-screen template—no matter the software you’re using. No more misprints, wasted labels, and lost time and money. It also has an easy drop-in design to change rolls in a flash; your employees won’t avoid changing labels like they avoid changing the paper in the copy room printer.
This Brother QL-1060N will print labels up to 4” wide with continuous tape. Printing is at high-quality resolution of 300×300 dpi. It can print about 69 labels per minute for barcodes, name badges, shipping labels, custom signage, and more. It also has a heavy-duty auto-cutter to cut between labels for a clean finish. This makes it ideal for printing large jobs quickly, efficiently, and professionally. Everyone in the office will be able to quickly learn, use, and enjoy the Brother Network Ready Label Printer QL-1060N.
Why Do You Need A Label Printer Right Now?
One box of 25 shipping labels can cost about $15. These 6 cents per label can quickly and significantly cut into your COGS, and you may not even be realizing it. That does not even include the cost of ink, toner, and printing. Suddenly, your margins become a lot smaller than you expected, and you begin to lose out on projected profits.
The right label printer, though, can save you significant money on labeling costs. If you are a small business, saving those 6+ cents for putting an address on a box could mean future growth of your business.
Additionally, packaging is crucial to an online business. Someone buys something from you based on what they see online; they have not held the product in their hand before (unless they are a repeat customer). The first time they experience your item will be holding the box in which it was shipped.
The quality of the box and the label is your first impression on your consumer. Make it a good one. Your labels should be professional and branded and your boxes clean and undented. A quality label printer will give you that attractive, aesthetic appeal good for any business.
You also likely use labels within your office, like for interdepartmental packages or files and binders. If you can use the same label maker for all your office needs, you’ll save time, money, and space—and your business will be able to thrive with boosted profits and quality.
The Bottom Line on the Best Commercial Label Printers
Choose the right label printer to save money, time, and waste. Whether you’re creating shipping labels or birthday signs, these label makers are great for small businesses that demand efficiency, usability, and cost-effectiveness.
A review of our top five products:
The best for saving money, eliminating waste, and integrating with online selling platforms: Rollo Shipping Label Printer
Easy, intuitive branding and customization of all your labels: DYMO LabelWriter
Print all sorts of labels on one device with a simple, usable machine: Brother QL-700P
Perfect for individuals or small businesses who want to save money on fast and easy printing: DYMO Twin Turbo
Perfect for the copy room with multiple users and high-volume prints: Brother Network Ready Label Printer QL-1060N