Warehouse Rack Labels Buying Guide: How to Choose the Right Rack Labels to Maximize Warehouse Productivity

Equipping your warehouse with a complete, custom warehouse label and signage solution is one of the most important things you can do maximize warehouse efficiency. While warehouse signs serve as the top layer of organization, warehouse rack labels provide more granular organization to allow workers to easily locate the proper racks and shelves for picking and stocking. If you’re not sure where to start with your warehouse sign solution, check out our Warehouse Signs Buying Guide for guidance. If you’re ready to drill down to rack labels, this guide will help you determine the proper warehouse rack labels for every warehouse application.

Why Warehouse Rack Labels? multi-level rack labels

Locating items for picking can easily be one of the most time-consuming tasks for warehouse staff without proper labeling solutions. Whether your facility spans hundreds of square feet, houses only a few dozen different types of products, or combines retail and warehouse operations in one location, you’ll find that rack labels make the process of locating the proper shelves and storage locations both faster and more accurate. Particularly when it comes to picking, un-labeled racks can lead to shipping errors and ultimately unhappy partners and end consumers.
Warehouse rack labels come in a variety of options to meet the needs of the many applications within the warehouse setting. From polyester rack labels that offer more durability than standard paper labels to multi-level rack labels for better visibility and ease of scanning, an array of options allow warehouses to design and configure a complete warehouse rack label solution that supports workflows and enhances productivity.
Warehouse rack labels don’t merely improve accuracy when identifying the proper racks and shelves for picking or stocking; they also support effective inventory management. Warehouse rack labels simplify data capture, eliminating human error and dramatically reducing the time spent documenting and analyzing data. By automating data capture, warehouse operators can gain more visibility into trends and bottlenecks – information that can then be used to optimize the layout of a warehouse to improve traffic flows and efficiency, make better use of space, and better plan ordering and shipments to adapt to demand and other influencing factors.

Warehouse Rack Label Applications and Use Cases

Racks and shelves are an important organizational layer within the warehouse, making it possible to store multiple layers of products in the same vertical square footage while still maintaining accessibility to items stored both on the top and bottom. But in the modern warehouse, properly labeling racks and shelves is more than merely attaching a sticker to a metal shelving unit. There are a variety of applications for warehouse rack labels in today’s warehouse settings such as:

  • Racks requiring (or suitable for) permanent labels polyester rack labels
  • Multi-level racks requiring distinct labels for each shelf
  • Temporary racks and shelves, demanding a non-permanent label that can be relocated
  • Racks used in cold storage areas
  • Racks in areas where rough product handling is likely

For racks that will be used long-term for the storage of legacy products – items that the company has stored and will continue to store for years – permanent label solutions are often appropriate. Camcode’s Polyester Rack Labels, for instance, offer permanent adhesion to a variety of surfaces and are also more durable than typical paper-based labels, allowing them to remain readable despite frequent bumps and abrasion. Printed with color directional elements, Polyester Rack Labels eliminate confusion and guesswork about which rack to scan, boosting productivity throughout the warehouse.
For facilities with high ceilings and racks that can only be reached by ladder, scanning standard rack labels while standing on the floor is often an impossibility. For this scenario, there are two options:

  • Rack Mount Retro-Reflective Labels, which can be scanned from the floor with long-range scanning devices.  These labels can be scanned from distances of up to 50 feet with long-range scanners. Camcode’s unique design allows our Rack Mount Retro-Reflective Labels to be scanned from dramatic angles not possible with other types of larack mount retro-reflective rack labelbels.
  • Multi-Level Warehouse Rack Label System, which positions a set of labels carefully coded with colors and graphics at the ideal scanning level, representing each level on a rack. These all-inclusive labels include color directional elements printed on a polyester face stock to clearly identify levels and minimize confusion for improved efficiency and error reduction.

If your organization already utilizes long-range scanning devices for other applications, Rack Mount Retro-Reflective Labels can be easily implemented without the additional investment of long-range scanners. Some warehouses utilize both Rack Mount Retro-Reflective Labels and Multi-Level Warehouse Rack Label Systems for comprehensive labeling or in different areas of the building.

Temporary Label Options for Transitional Racks

For warehouse racks that are frequently used for short-term storage or seasonal products, permanent labels can be difficult to remove magnetic rack labelsor cover up, making it difficult to maintain transitional racks and shelving. Most warehouses eventually encounter the need to repurpose existing racks due to changes in products, vendors, and the like. For racks designated for transitional storage, such as seasonal products, Magnetic Warehouse Rack Labels allow the frequent repositioning or changing of labels without leaving sticky residue behind or spending time trying to remove old, permanent labels. Magnetic Warehouse Rack Labels have an overlaminate that shields against abrasion and chemicals, making these labels a durable solution for nearly any area of the warehouse where you require temporary label options.
If you need to cover up old labels, though, Camcode’s Cover-Up Correction Warehouse Rack Labels prevent bleed-through from old, underlying labels that can sometimes lead to scanning errors or decreased readability. These labels are printed on a 100% opaque material to ensure that old labels underneath never impact the integrity of the current label.

Cold Storage Label Options That Withstand Extreme Temperatures

Even a highly durable standard barcode label – typically printed on a paper-based face stock – can’t hold up to prolonged exposure to extreme cold. Warehouses with cold storage areas require rack label solutions that are up to the task of maintaining permanent adhesion despite constant exposure to extremely cold temperatures. Camcode’s Cold Storage Warehouse Rack Labels can handle the coldest end of the spectrum, withstanding sub-zero temperatures and damp environments as cold as -20°F. cold-storage placard
With a special adhesive that performs well in cold and damp environments and also elevated temperatures, Camcode’s Cold Storage Rack Labels offer the durability needed for modern warehouse applications offering the coldest of cold storage options.
Some climate-controlled warehouse applications require mechanical attachment rather than adhesive. For these applications, Camcode’s Cold Storage Warehouse Rack Placards fit the bill, offering the same ability to withstand temps as cold as -20°F as their adhesive-based counterparts. These labels consist of 3.0 mil Premium Polyester Plus which is overlaminated with 1.0 mil clear polyester face stock placed on a .016” thick aluminum backer for the ultimate in durability. The aluminum backer ensures that the label won’t freeze or crack in extreme cold temperatures, with mechanical attachments ensuring that it remains securely affixed to the correct location.
Warehouse rack labels seem a simple solution, yet there are many considerations that must be weighed to ensure that you’re purchasing the right label for your specific applications. Considering factors such as scanning distance, possible exposure to bumps or abrasion in the environment that could damage the integrity of a label, racks used for transient storage vs. fixed racks, temperature extremes for cold storage areas, and other factors will help you identify the labels that offer the right durability and functionality to maximize your investment and enhance productivity within your facility.
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