As the Wine Industry Grows, So Too Must the Design.

Early wine labels served the simple, utilitarian purpose of making wines easy to identify when cellaring. Today, wine labels serve a very different function. If they’re good, they communicate a strong brand identity and tell a story about both the winemaker and the contents of the bottle. If they’re great, they lure customers in with their bold graphics and unique design – as the late, great, wine critic Jerry Mead once said, “sixty percent of wine sales are based on that ever-elusive air around the bottle.”

Clearly, a strong label design is crucial for building brand recognition and moving your product off the store shelves and into customers homes. But what exactly ensures that a wine label will be effective?

Go Bold.

Remember, bold doesn’t have to equal loud. Whether you’re producing a sophisticated single vineyard designate elegant enough to grace the table of most acclaimed experts, or fun and friendly wine that begs to be enjoyed with a backyard BBQ, you can benefit from a bold approach to design. Eye-catching designs jump off the shelves and are more likely to make their way into shopping carts.

This means taking at look at what your competition is doing and creating something different that stands out from the existing designs. More important than just being different, though, is sticking to principles of good design. Pay attention to your ability to make a statement with balance, emphasis, rhythm and unity. You can create a bold label design with high contrasting colors as much as with analogous hues.

Make Connections.

The most important aspects of your product’s characteristics– bouquet, palate, finish – can’t be evaluated by your customers until after they purchase a bottle. This means that it’s important for your design to connect the intangible features of your product (like imagery and “brand feel”) with it’s tangible characteristics (the fact that it’s delicious!). 

KISS and tell.

We’ve all heard the age-old adage “keep it simple, s…”, and while we think that’s pretty good advice for design in general, when we’re talking wine labels there’s more to keep in mind than just clean, simple design. Wine labels should also have some depth and meaning behind their design. So much of the wine industry’s allure is the culture associated with it, and your customers want to be a part of the magic. Let them in by creating a label that gives them a peak into the story. 

Hire a Professional.

In addition to all of the creative elements that need to be taken into consideration when designing wine labels, there are a lot of practical elements to consider as well. Wine labels are subject to a variety of laws and federal regulations intended to protect the public and ensure the integrity of the marketplace. It’s important that your designer knows the ins and outs regarding label regulations to ensure that you’re label goes to print with all of the valid information and specs included.