Why It’s an Exciting Time to Sell Wine Labels

This month we celebrate National Wine Day on May 25th. I admit I’m not a wine connoisseur, but I do know an awful lot about wine labels and can help you be successful with your next opportunity. For starters, consider a few trends about America’s wine industry:

  • Americans are buying more wine than ever. Last year, U.S. wine consumption grew 5%.
  • Millennials (ages 21-36) represent 36% of wine drinkers, the largest and fastest-growing segment of consumers. These younger drinkers are strongly influencing packaging and labeling trends.
  • The number of U.S. wineries grew 7% last year to over 9,000.
  • Small wineries, those producing fewer than 5,000 cases, make up 78% of all wineries and are the fastest growing type of winery.
  • While California is still the largest wine producing state, 15 states across the country now have 100 or more wineries.

These trends underscore the opportunity to build your know-how around design trends and printing techniques so you can feel comfortable in the conversation with your winery or bottling customer.

Wine Label Design Trends

  • Label as art. Wine label designs have evolved to become works of art thanks to advances in printing technologies and designers’ willingness to take risks with edgy graphics, humor and nods to popular culture.
  • Know your target audience. While boomers prefer traditional wine labels, Millennials – the highest growth segment – prefer more modern wine labels that feature bright colors, bold illustrative graphics, quirky names, and elements that tell a story about what’s inside the bottle.
  • Wine as social currency. Consumers want wine bottles that are “guest-worthy” and “share-worthy.” To be guest-worthy, the purchaser should feel proud to gift the bottle or showcase it on the table during a meal. To be share-worthy, consumers want to photograph the bottle and share it on their social network. Think: Instagram.
  • Short is big. High-end digital printing is rivaling original art giving wineries flexibility to produce short-run customized, regional or promotional labels.

Wine Label Printing Techniques
By understanding wine label-printing techniques, you will have more success guiding your customer to an appropriate design. Consider these points:

  • Customized wine labels can be printed using flexographic or digital printing processes. Each produces quality results. Digital printing is more cost-effective for short runs. Flexography is more cost effective for longer runs.
  • Paperstocks run the gamut for wine labels from textured “estate” stocks to more standard stocks.  You may want to consider some of the unique wet strength stocks such as Estate #8 with a smooth finish, Cream Estate #9, Black Vellum or Pearlized stocks. All of these custom wine label options offer a premium look without premium pricing. There are many others as well. Just ask one of our label experts for advice based on your project.
  • When printing for a collection of wines (longer run), it is more economical if the custom wine bottle labels are the same size on the front and back and across varietals so that a single die can be used to cut the labels.
  • Short-run wine labels (under 10,000) can have unique edges using cost-effective laser die cutting equipment that requires no extra tooling, dies or time.
  • Decorative finishes can make a wine stand out on the shelf and don’t have to cost a lot of extra money. Consider digital foil simulation, cold foil, hot stamping, spot varnish and embossing.

If you have an opportunity to work with a wine label customer, boost your success rate by knowing the custom wine bottle design trends and printing techniques that can make you a wine label connoisseur.

Here to help,

VP of Operations

News navigation
Stay Connected