We strive to remain one of the top authorities in innovative packaging today, so we know it’s our job to comb the market for the best and most current industry advice out there. Now, we’re opening up our findings to our clients and website visitors through the posts on our Retail Packaging Blog so we can bring our expertise to you!
Today, we want to let you in on what we’ve recently learned from the 2016 WestRock Global Consumer Study on Packaging Satisfaction, Packaging Matters.
Here, we’ll break down the data and condense the most important insights culled from over 2,000 study participants and 200 packaging industry professionals. If you’ve ever thought that custom shopping bags and other forms of retail packaging don’t matter, prepare to have your mind blown.
What Constitutes Packaging?
The study opens with an important distinction: packaging isn’t just the box your product arrives in on the doorstep or how it looks when stocked on store shelves. Really, it’s every part of how a product is packaged, across multiple stages of purchasing and use. So, while that includes paper shopping bags or decorative corrugated boxes, it also includes tissue paper, gift tags, how the package opens and closes, the logo and other graphics featured on the packaging, and even the shape of the package itself.
How Packaging Influences Consumer Habits
Whether an online shop or a brick-and-mortar location, how you package your products has a huge influence on whether or not a customer will buy – and whether they’ll buy again. The study shows that:
- 64% of in-store shoppers tried a product because they liked its packaging
- 29% of online shoppers were inspired to learn more and conduct their own research about a product because its packaging appealed to them
- 41% of all in-store shoppers repurchased an item directly because of its packaging
- 36% of in-store shoppers switched brands due to negative packaging experiences – meaning that shoppers either didn’t like the packaging’s look, or they found it difficult to open or close
- 22% of customers wrote an online a review of products that mentioned packaging
The main takeaways from how packaging influences consumer habits?
We learned that:
- 66% of shoppers bought a product solely due to its packaging
- 35% of shoppers actually changed brands because they liked a new product’s packaging more
- 20% of online customers interacted with a company on some social media platform because they enjoyed a product’s packaging.
If you ask us, this only proves what we’ve always been saying: quality and creative packaging can mean the difference between a shopper buying your product, and them buying from your competitor.
How Packaging Influences Customer Satisfaction
Getting someone to buy your products is only half the battle. In order to gain more influence in your industry, to increase the buzz around your product, and to build customer loyalty, customers must have a positive experience actually using your product. But sadly, according to the WestRock Study, if your packaging is extra fabulous, you’re in the minority. Perhaps so many customers are influenced to actually buy products when they like the packaging since:
- only 11% of shoppers – that’s an insanely low number, and one we at Mid-Atlantic Packaging are committed to changing…but that’s an entirely different article
- 41% of customers still feel that packaging influences customer satisfaction and brand appreciation
What does this tell us? That many companies are flat-out ignoring the wants and needs of their customers, and that’s just a shame. Don’t be like those companies. Instead, show your customers you’ve heard their demands and that you’re ready to satisfy them with new packaging.
So, what other elements of packaging help to contribute to overall satisfaction?
- 71% of consumers say they’d really like packaging to be easy to open (we’ve all been there, trying to break into particularly difficult packaging)
- 45% of shoppers said they noticed and appreciated when companies used eco-friendly materials
- 80% of consumers are relatively easy to please, saying that they just want packaging to prevent a product from spilling (we thought this was obvious, but perhaps some companies have been slacking in recent years…)
Above all, we learned that superior packaging contributes to both the consumer experience and the actual satisfaction a customer experiences with a product once they get it home.
We hope you’ve learned as much as we did from this year’s results of the WestRock’s Packaging Matters 2016 study, and we’re thrilled to have been able to share these insights with you. When you work with us, you know you’re making an informed decision, with results that can only be compounded by the knowledge we gain and implement from studies like these.