Self-adhesive labels
are applied directly to a product or its packaging. One of the most commonly used forms of self-adhesive labelling is encountered in retail centres. Retailers use self-adhesive price stickers to let consumers know the asking prices of items.

All of us have seen these “price tags” and most of us have seen a store employee marking goods with a handheld label applicator that can be adjusted to create pricing labels at any denomination with a few turns of a knob. This method of price marking has long been favoured, but some are now arguing that insertable label options are a better solution than self-adhesive systems.

With insertable labels, the rack or shelf holding the good for sale is outfitted with a bracket mount into which a price tag can be inserted. The inserted label may feature a full barcode, product details and more--it can provide more information than the standard self-adhesive labels used for pricing.

Proponents of this system maintain that insertable labels are more efficient (less time spent tagging every item) and that it makes price adjustments far easier (one need not re-mark every item of a given type with new self-adhesive labels). The presence of the barcode makes price-checking and inventory processes run more efficiently.

However, there is a downside to eschewing self-adhesive labels. Many consumers are not accustomed to looking anywhere but at the product for a price and the change could be confusing. Additionally, “stray” items that start on one shelf and eventually end up across the store basically stay “unpriced” until their return, costing the business owner some potential sails.

Retailers have a choice between insertable labels and self-adhesive labels acting as price tags. There are arguments to be made for both perspectives.

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