Understanding Label Orientation

When purchasing labels for your label printer, it’s important to pay attention to the label’s orientation on the roll. Every label has a width and a height (take 4″ x 6″ as an example). The first number is the width of the label and the height being the second number. A 4″ x 6″ label is 4 inches wide and 6 inches tall.

Epson TM-C3500 Width x Length

Standard Label Sizing

It’s important to understand how labels are sized. Blank labels are sized to the following format: Width x Height. So, if you see a label with a description as 3″ x 2″, this means the label is three inches wide and two inches in length.

When purchasing blank labels or custom labels from manufactures, you should also follow this formatting. Be aware of how the label’s orientation affects the label application process.

The Difference between Similarly Sized Labels on a Roll is Orientation

Epson ColorWorks C3500 Width x Length

If you were assigned a task to print a four-inch by six-inch label. Which should you get, a 4” x 6” or a 6” by 4”?

The 4” x 6” label is similar to a 6” x 4” label, however; there’s an important distinction as far as how the labels are oriented on the roll. With the 4” x 6” label, the label’s width is 4 inches across the roll and its height is 6 inches. With the 6” x 4” label, the label is 6 inches across the roll and 4 inches tall. This may be a problem for some printers that can print up to 4 inches wide.

Why Label Orientation Matters

For smaller labeling jobs that are hand applied to products, label orientation isn’t as important. You can adjust the print settings and turn the label when applying it to the finished product. However, if you plan to use a machine to apply your labels such as a label dispenser or applicator, then label orientation is critical. The label orientation on the label roll must match that of the label applicator. Otherwise, your labels will be applied sideways!

The label orientation that is printed from your printer will need to be in the same orientation that the label applicator is used to apply the label to your product. The orientation needs to be an exact match to the label applicator so it applies correctly to your product.

Tips for Choosing the Right Label Orientation

Label Applicator Width x Length

If you plan on using a label applicator with your finished labels, it’s important to visualize your printed labels being applied to your product.

If your product is to be labeled on the application sideways, the width of the label (roll) will end up being the height of the label. It’s important when designing and printing the label to rotate to the label accordingly.

When determining which blank labels to buy, it’s important to pay attention and choose the product with the correct width and height for your needs. For example, choosing a 4” x 6” or a 6” x 4” would depend on how the label will be applied to your product.

We are committed to helping you order the correct blank labels from us. If you need any help understanding which label orientation is right for your product, contact our support team and we’ll be happy to help.