Warehouse Labeling Ideas: Warehouse Rack Labels and Labeling

Bradley Johnson
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    As an eCommerce business owner, you likely have warehouses on your mind. If you’re just getting started with warehouse research, it’s a good idea to first know what is warehouse. Using the right kind of warehouse is crucial to the success of your business as a whole. 

    Once you have your warehousing figured out, labeling should be your next warehouse organization priority. Clear labeling for your products allows pickers and packers to easily find and quickly retrieve products.

    Strong labeling practices reduce warehousing costs and simplify your warehouse management system reporting. There are multiple labeling ideas your warehouse can implement for greater efficiency. Continue reading to learn more about the best warehouse labels and labeling ideas as well as warehouse label maker suggestions.

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    Warehouse Rack Labels and Warehouse Rack Labeling Ideas

    Racks are the large, stationary shelving units in your warehouse. Since racks are the least likely type of shelving to be moved, applying warehouse rack labels should be done as soon as possible. 

    There are two common approaches for warehouse rack labeling ideas: standard labeling and serpentine labeling. In standard rack labeling, products are labeled in parallel structure. This means product labeling is strictly sequential in each row. 

    Standard labeling looks like this:

    Standard Rack Labeling

    In serpentine rack labeling, new shelves of products pick up closest to where the last shelf left off. This means that each successive product category is closest to the preceding number. 

    Serpentine labeling looks like this: 

    Serpentine Rack Labeling

    The serpentine labeling method is aptly named. Instead of walking an entire shelf length of space to reach the next product, warehouse associates can wind around to the closest corner of the next shelf. 

    Warehousing experts recommend serpentine labeling for a couple reasons.

    1. It’s least likely to cause confusion. Pickers and packers can memorize locations for specific products faster. 
    2. It saves time. Workers don’t need to walk all the way to the other side of a shelf when picking orders. This is especially time-saving in larger warehouses. 

    If it's been too long since your warehouse labels were last updated, you may need to hire more workers. Posting a great warehouse manager job description with an attractive warehouse manager salary can get you the help you need.

    How to Label Shelves in Warehouse

    Shelf labeling is straightforward when you know how to get the process started. Here are tips on how to label shelves in a warehouse: 

    • Be consistent. Your warehouse staff won’t know where certain products belong if your labeling is inconsistent. Ensure every product's UPC code and SKU number is easily identifiable on your labels. Think about a labeling system that will suit your products best, and use that for all of your product categories. 
    • Label starting from the floor up. In the event you add more shelves on top of existing ones or move to a larger warehouse in the future, you won’t need to relabel. 
    • Use software correctly. Warehouse inventory management software reads data through alphanumeric code. This means that “3” should be labeled as “03” or “003” to be read by a computer, depending on your program’s requirements. ERP software can also help which is why you should understand the benefits of ERP.
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    Best Warehouse Labels: OfficeSmartLabels

    officesmart warehouse labelsofficesmart warehouse labels

    We believe the best warehouse labels are made by OfficeSmartLabels. The generous label size of 3 x 1.5 inches and large black print against white stickers offers superior readability. This is especially helpful in big warehouses where pickers need to locate products quickly. 

    Label numbers are available from 0001 to 10,000 and are printed alphanumerically. You can also order up to four rolls of labels at a time. Label all of your shelves easily with these simple warehouse label stickers. 

    Best Warehouse Aisle Labels: SignMission

    signmission warehouse aisle labelssignmission warehouse aisle labels

    The best warehouse aisle labels are made by SignMission. Their bold, readable messaging reminds warehouse employees to keep aisles clear and put safety measures first. 

    SignMission’s high-quality, vinyl decal material offers wonderful durability for any warehouse environment. Their warehouse aisle labels are also printed in both English and Spanish. Browse label sizes ranging from 5 x 3.5 inches to 24 x 18 inches. 

    Best Warehouse Bin Location Labels: GlossyEnd

    glossyend warehouse bin location labelsglossyend warehouse bin location labels

    When it’s time to assign bin numbers, GlossyEnd offers the best warehouse bin location labels. GlossyEnd’s label holders come with two magnetic backing strips for easy application to steel racking. They can be spaced out as much or as little as need be, making them perfect for warehouse shelving of any size.

    The 3.5 x 5.5-inch size is great for printing new labels from your label maker. If bin or product information needs to be updated, you can simply swap out the old label for the new one. 

    If you discontinue a product line and need to move bins around, these warehouse bin location labels can be adjusted on the fly. The vinyl sheathing keeps bin information visible during restocking and protected against moisture and dust.

    Best Warehouse Floor Labels: Brady Corporation

    brady corporation warehouse floor labelsbrady corporation warehouse floor labels

    Brady Corporation makes the best warehouse floor labels. Their durable, smooth labeling tape can be used to signify electrical boxes, loading areas, locations that require PPE, and more. 

    Brady’s floor labeling tape can be removed as smoothly as it is applied. They offer warehouse floor label tape in three different colors: black and white, black and yellow, and red and white. Tape width options come in 2, 3, or 4 inches, and each roll of tape is 100 feet long. 

    Best Warehouse Label Maker: DYMO


    The type of label maker you use depends on the needs of your warehouse. However, if you’re looking for the best all-around warehouse label maker, you can’t go wrong with DYMO. This company is well known for its high-quality label printing machines and software. 

    DYMO’s user interface that’s both Windows and macOS compatible makes it simple to print any label you need. Their thermal printing technology also eliminates toner and ink costs. DYMO warehouse label makers can be used to print barcode, shipping, folder, and name labels. 

    Best Warehouse Label Software: DYMO

    dymo warehouse label softwaredymo warehouse label software

    Warehouse label software often works best when it corresponds with the right hardware. Because of this, we recommend DYMO as the best warehouse label software. 

    DYMO is compatible with both macOS and Windows operating systems. You can also use it to easily create labels from Microsoft Excel, Word, Google Contacts, and Microsoft Outlook. DYMO label software is included with the purchase of any DYMO label printer. 

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    Put a Label On It

    Labeling racks, bins, and products is easy when you have a clear plan for it. Be familiar with what is warehouse work so you can train new employees efficiently on your warehouse management process flow and how to communicate with your online marketplace (if you use one). Use these recommendations to jumpstart or improve your warehouse’s labeling strategy.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Warehouse Labels

    Warehouse labels are a small, yet crucial aspect of any warehousing operation. To make the most of them, it helps to have answers for commonly asked questions. Check out our answers below: 

    What information is found on a rack label?

    Warehouse rack labels contain information that barcode scanners transmit to software and that humans use for inventory, picking, and packing. A rack label will usually have two types of information: the one- or two-dimensional barcode and the numbers and letters for human use. 

    The barcode is used to pull up the product’s profile when restocking, backordering, and verifying order information. The other bits of information, such as a SKU number, are used for inventory organization and analysis, such as conducting SKU rationalization processes. Need help with SKUs? Download our free SKU generator template.

    Want to better organize your warehouse, inventory, and individual products?
    Get our FREE SKU Generator Template.

    How do you label pallets?

    Pallets are an integral part of any warehouse and must be labeled well to maintain smooth operations. Here are three principles to keep in mind when labeling pallets:

    • Use a sequential labeling system. Each pallet needs a unique code. If more than one pallet uses the same number, confusion about whether or not that pallet has been unloaded will be commonplace.
    • Label both sides of each pallet. Pallets are stacked against walls when not in use, but this can make it difficult to know where specific ones are. Put a label on either fork entry side so you can quickly find one if needed.
    • Make sure plastic wrap doesn’t obscure the label. It’s all too common for shrinkwrap to make scanning difficult, so ensure your label sits outside all of the plastic. 

    What is rack label?

    A rack label is a plastic or adhesive label on a warehouse rack that details the type of product near the label. Rack labels are used to describe inventory, sort top-selling products, and organize all of the goods in a warehouse.

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    What is the Best Warehouse Label Maker 2022?

    The best warehouse label maker in 2022 is DYMO. It's considered to be the best warehouse label maker for all-around use thanks to its high-quality label printing software. DYMO is compatible with macOS and Windows which means that it's easy to print all kinds of labels. Due to DYMO's thermal printing technology, the toner and ink costs are also eliminated.

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