Your labeling requirements are dictated by your actual package and the label or labels being applied to it. Your selection of labeling equipment may influence the cost of your labels.
What is meant by that? Well, if you have a front and a back label your label costs could be reduced by either printing a front and back label on the same roll or on separate rolls. Talk to your label printer to see what works for you.
Do you run reverse tapered containers or bottles as well as straight walled? How will the equipment handle this in a cost effective way? Some machines, such as rotaries require change-parts to fit specific bottle sizes or shapes. Typically, in-line machines do not need change-parts. Special shaped containers may need special machines often requiring changeparts.
Equipment cost is related to the required run speed (the faster you run, typically, the more expensive the equipment) as well as the number of labeling heads or special capabilities such as label orientation in relation to an existing feature on a bottle or can such as a seam or an existing label. When choosing a labeling machine opt for one that can comfortable run at the required production speed without hitting the machines maximum output capability.
Consider after sales service and support. Will your equipment supplier be able to assist you should any challenges arise, or breakdowns occur? Do they carry an adequate spare parts inventory should you need replacements in a hurry? Ask for a Recommended Spare Parts Kit list which is usually comprised or wear parts or critical failure parts. Do you need to keep these parts in house or can the supplier provide them in a timely manner?
Does the equipment have proprietary electronics such as circuit boards? Check with the potential supplier that these items will be readily available should a component fail.
Ask for customer references from the equipment supplier that you can contact to ask questions about the equipment and support that the seller provides. Consider a site visit to an existing facility that is using equipment similar to what you are looking at purchasing.
Ask for the potential maintenance cost for the equipment based on your particular use requirements. Also ask for a Preventative Maintenance checklist. Can this be done in-house or does this need to be done by the supplier.