I've written a lot about selling on Amazon and eBay with retail arbitrage but I've never touched on something every seller will experience: removing price stickers from your products before your ship them to Amazon or your customers.
The process is pretty simple but getting it wrong can lead to damaged inventory or customer complaints (no one likes getting a bunch sticky gum on their hands).
The Best Way to Remove Pricing Stickers from Products
If you think I'm over complicating this, trust me, when you need to remove hundreds of stickers each month you will be happy you have all the tips you can get!
The wrong way is to just use your fingernails. Some stickers may come off easily enough to do this but you will regret using the scratch approach long term.
Step #1 Heat Up the Labels (If Necessary)
Use a heat gun and warm up the labels if you know they won't just slide right off. This will soften the adhesive of the sticker and make removing them much easier and will leave less residue.
A blow dryer works alright as well but the heat gun is a great $20 investment.
Be careful when using the heat gun. Do I need to tell you that it get's really hot? Ok, next step.
If you're removing stickers from plastic products, be careful with the heat gun. You can melt the product if you aren't careful!
STEP #2 Use a Scotty Peeler to Remove Sticker
Scotty Peelers are a staple product of the Amazon retail arbitrage seller. There are similar products you can buy in the paint sections of places like Lowes or WalMart, but these are just perfectly designed for removing small stickers quickly and easily without damaging the product.
If you followed step #1 and heated up the label, you definitely won't want to use your fingers! Use a Scotty Peeler.
Pro Tip: If you're working with stickers that are pre-cut and come apart in pieces, you can add a clear piece of tape over top of the sticker and take the whole thing off in one clean scratch.
Step #3 Lighter Fluid to Remove Residue. Use GOO-Gone If Necessary.
You will often have some gum residue remaining after peeling off the majority of the sticker and lighter fluid will help get that cleared up.
If the lighter fluid doesn't work, try the Goo Gone but use it sparingly as it can stain packages.
Don't use it unless there is actual residue that needs removed and can't be removed by peeling.
There are alternatives to Goo Gone or lighter fluid but make sure that if you use something else that it is relatively odorless. A popular alternative to Goo Gone is Un-Do.
Unfortunately, some stickers are just going to be too difficult to remove perfectly. This is rare but if it happens, you can consider adding a "Thank You!" sticker overtop of the price tag as long as it doesn't look too unnatural.
STEP #4 Wipe Dry with a Paper Towel
Use something that won't leave residue (Kleenex and other tissue papers will make a mess so don't use those).
Understand this: removing pricing stickers isn't optional. Leaving the stickers on is a no-no and can really rub your customers the wrong way. Imagine getting a product you paid $39.99 for and see that it was bought at Marshalls for $7.99.
Sure it's just capitalism, but that doesn't mean customers can't get angry and leave poor reviews or return the product.
Did I miss anything? Leave your tips in the comments!