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Creating Custom Stickers?
Consider These Design Tips

by Jeff Nicholson

Before You Begin To Design Your Sticker...

Leave Enough Time

Graphic of a melting alarm clock Frequently sticker design suffers and money is wasted due to people putting off the sticker design and ordering until "I need them yesterday". Production generally takes 3-7 days but you also need time to review ideas, consider manufacturer recommendations, and prepare the designs.

What Are Your Goals

What is the purpose for making stickers… building identity, advertising a specific event or product, pointing people to a web site…? Where do you ideally see the stickers being applied; to a car, to a helmet, to computers or equipment? How will you be distributing tSmall picture of The Thinker sculpturehe stickers; in the mail, as a hand out at trade shows or special events, included with products, sold as a product itself...? Your answers will affect the size and design of your stickers - be as specific as possible. You don't want to have finished stickers before you realize "oh no, it won't fit in the envelope", or "oh no, the adhesive isn't holding the stickers on our equipment".

Look Around and Research.

Narrow picture of a woman’s eyes looking rightWhat are other people in your industry using for promotional stickers? What isn't being done that may be effective? What stickers do you see out on the highway - why are they there - why do they work (or not work)? How can you do something powerful and unique while still effectively tying in with your other marketing efforts?

When You Design Your Sticker...

Keep It Simple!

A sticker design needs to convey a message quickly, clearly, and often from a distance. Beware of small details, intricate graphics, more than three colors, and more than one simple message/image. Stickers are not newspaper ads. View them as very small billboards - design with a clear logo, "headline" or graphic.

Bigger Isn't Always Better.

Bigger custom stickers don’t work for certain applications

The bigger the sticker the easier to see, right? True, but a promotional sticker won't be seen by anyone if it is never applied. Put big stickers on your company vehicles but give customers a sticker that they are willing and apt to apply somewhere visible to the masses.

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Consider Die-Cutting.

A sticker's visual appeal and impact is increased when designs are cut to shape (something other than a square or rectangle). Circles and ovals often have no added cost, and any custom shape is possible with the use of a die. A die is usually well worth the inexpensive one-time fee.

Think In Reverse.

Just because you are printing on white vinyl doesn't mean the background of the sticker needs to be white. For a one color decal or sticker design use a printed color as the background and leave the copy white for more contrast and more appealing design.

Consider Back copy.

If you are creating a promotional sticker, don't waste the white space on the back of the sticker decal. Use it for advertising, coupons, news, postcard copy, coop ads… any information you want to get into the hands of your prospects and/or customers.

Make It Clear?

College stickers on car window showing best print colors If you are designing a sticker on clear material for application to windows, it needs white ink! White reflects light (more visible) while darker colors are translucent and blend with the dark window background. In my opinion, designs on white vinyl are more visually effective than clear material in 90% of the cases.

How Sticky Do You Want It?

Brian Neilson pulling on “Manplow” sticker with extra strong adhesiveDepending on your purposes, stickers can come with ultra-removable adhesive on up to a super aggressive adhesive. Static decals have no adhesive - although for the added price, and limited applications, these are seldom necessary. We also do not recommend stickers with adhesive "on the face" for inside window applications. These have more limited applications, are harder to apply, and usually not necessary.


For more information about these tips and valuable info and ideas, check out my special report; Maximizing the Power of Promotional Decals which covers what promo stickers can do for you, designing your sticker, utilizing back copy, and producing & purchasing your stickers.

Share your rough ideas, logos, and goals with our Design Team here at Websticker. We'll work up some options and get you pricing at no charge - Just fill out our Pricing Request Form. You are under no obligation to buy from and will not be added to any mailing list.