What are you printing on your tags? The answer could be saving (or costing) you money. Part 2

This is Part 2 of a 2 part series by our Catalog/OnSyte Director Todd Davis. He is giving tips on adding useful information to labels that you can print yourself using NiceLabel 6 software.

Read Part 1 here

Put on the PO

You want even more ammunition when you spot sickly plants? Place the PO number on the tag too. That way you can state exactly which order the bad plants came in on.

If your vendor is worth his salt, he should be able to track those plants to specific lots and check his fields. When, lo and behold, he finds those plants are indeed infested, your credit is assured.

There are also nurseries that include the PO date on the tag. This gets dicey. Yes, it’s handy to look at a plant and know instantly how long it’s been on your yard without having to go back and reference a PO number.

But then again, you don’t want customers to look at a tag and say, “Holy cow, this tree is old enough to vote!”

One solution is to put the date in code. A simple way is to add one digit in front and in back of the date. For instance, the date April 15, 2014 would be 50415149. Most customers without spy training wouldn’t decipher that.

Retail/wholesale pricing

Many nurseries sell to both retail and wholesale customers. When that’s the case, you’re always going to have two different price points for each plant you sell.

In addition to putting the retail price on the tag, it’s handy to have the wholesale price too. That way your wholesale customers can shop without constantly asking your staff, “How much is this? How much is that?”

Once again, this is where codes come in. (Historical note: I’m told that Manny Shemin, who founded Shemin Nurseries in Connecticut in 1955, was the first to devise such pricing codes. I can neither confirm nor deny this claim.)

An easy code for customers to understand is putting the wholesale price at the end of a series of numbers. For instance, something that would wholesale for $53.99 could be coded 1098475399.

Even if you don’t sell retail at your nursery at all, sometimes placing your price in code is still a good idea. There are times when landscape customers bring out their clients to hand pick your stock. Your clients don’t want the homeowner to know what they’re paying for your plants.

Even more stuff?

By now your tag can get pretty cluttered. After you add your logo, the plant name, size and a bar code, that’s a lot of information to cram on.

There is more you could do. I know nurseries that consecutively number all their plants for tracking purposes. This is also easily done with NiceLabel software. But it may not be necessary in your situation.

But I’d call the above information a must on any nursery label. It is vital information that will save you money in the long run.

Just like that phone in your pocket, your label printer is a much more useful machine than you give it credit. Use it to its full potential and your bottom line will improve.

About the author: Todd Davis is Director of the Catalog/OnSyte division of Horticultural Marketing & Printing. He leads an inside sales staff that services North America with marketing products and solutions for the green industry. Todd has varied experience in horticulture, from managing a wholesale nursery to writing/editing/publishing hort trade publications. He is active in state and national nursery organizations and is a frequent speaker at industry events. You can contact Todd at hortprinters@integracolor.com.

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