Whether you’re attempting to sell your own products or trying to help your clients sell their products by offering great design, learning how to design a sticker that will make products fly of the shelf is a vital skill for any designer/marketer.
There are a couple of things you should consider before attempting to design your own stickers. For instance, do you even know how to design a sticker? It’s a very important place to begin and though it seems a silly question, most people are unsure of where they should start. If that is the case, here are some tips.
Designing Stickers: The How To’s
- The first step is choosing your design; seems easy enough, right? You can find an image anywhere. It is possible to find designs on the internet, use personal photos or borrow ideas from others. The higher contrast images are better to use, as they are usually cleaner and have bright colours. If you are using a personal photo, scan it and save the image to your computer.
- If you want to create the sticker entirely from scratch, here’s how you get started: create your image. Your computer is probably equipped with a “draw” program in which you can create a masterpiece.
- Do not forget the trivialities like colour. Brighter, more vibrant colours often work best, especially if being printed on a lesser quality printer. As you are going through the process, test the colours you are using by printing out sample pages.
- Check and re-check the item to which you are going to stick your finished product. You want to make sure your dimensions are just so; pay close attention to whether or not your design will fit your printed page!
- Some computers will have a built in template for creating stickers, which is where you need to transfer your design. If you don’t know how to access the templates, you can also transfer the image to Microsoft Word and go from there. MS Word allows you to manipulate the image and form it to fit your specifications.
- Printing out a sticker is the same as printing a design on a page of computer paper, except for one thing: vinyl stock. A sticker is only as good as its backing. Before getting started, run a test sheet through the printer to make sure everything is properly situated.
- The last step before applying a sticker is to cut it out and separate if there are duplicates. Look it over and then find a place for it!
Designing Stickers: Dos and Don’ts
- Simplify your design, especially if it is a message you want to relay. A large, complicated sticker is not going to catch anyone’s attention. Do not apply too much diversity of colour, small print or long statements. Bumper stickers are especially difficult because people often have very little time to see it; take that into account and create something catchy and simple.
- While it is true that bigger objects are easier to see, you have to keep your audience in mind. If the sticker is for personal use, you probably don’t care to clog up your entire rear window with your message. If you are using the stickers are promotional items, it can be a different story. You are welcome to pass out large and in charge bumper stickers to promote a service or business, but the truth is: no one will use it.
- Think about being more unique in shape. While rectangles are nice, they are grossly overused. However, it is possible to cut out any shape you want with a die cutter. Most places will charge a small amount extra for unique shapes and sizes, but it could be worth it in the end. After all, eyes are drawn to atypical designs.
- You don’t have to be a stagnant sticker maker; backgrounds can incorporate colour. It doesn’t matter if the vinyl paper used is white, that is standard. You can make the best of the situation or you can change it. It is possible to change the background colour and print it out on white vinyl. Think outside the box, that is what ultimately draws and keeps attention.
- Stickers that are passed out for promotional purposes have many different option and variations. For instance, your company name and logo do not have to take up the entire page. In fact, it probably won’t, so what are you using that excess background for? If you are not using it for anything, it is wasted space. Put some small advertising information on it, something that will make the consumer want to dig a little deeper.
- Adjust your levels of stickiness appropriately. It is typically not a good idea to use face adhesives, as it limits the placement prospects and are less likely to be used. However, choose an adhesive that is going to work well for everyone. Do not put an aggressively strong adhesive on a sticker that most will use for a vehicle decal. Make it stick, but don’t make it too permanent.