The standard for bar-code labels is plain black-and-white, and that's what we recommend for you. However, we can also print custom bar-code labels in color, and they'll scan just fine. It takes a little extra care to make multicolored bar-code labels work, but attention to detail is something you can always count on with Etiquette Systems.
We begin by knocking out a white background behind the symbology, ensuring maximum contrast. We can do this on any face-stock material, including translucent or transparent films; we just print white boxes first, then image the variable data symbols on top. We're always careful to extend the knock-out area by one-quarter inch (0.25") to either side of the symbology, to create a quiet zone—a space that must be free of designs, so the scanner can recognize the code.
The images on bar-code labels must also be clean and sharp in order to be properly scanned. Therefore, when printing with a conventional analog printing press, we never image bar-codes using the CMYK color process. Instead, we print all bar-code stickers as 'spot,' to ensure no blurred edges. In addition, we only print bar-codes in darker PMS colors when black isn't an option.