Have you ever received a product that was broken during shipping, and you had to send it back? Can you remember a time when opening something you bought was an ordeal because you had to use a military-grade weapon to get through layers of hard plastic?
Businesses spend countless hours and dollars researching, designing, building and selling their products to establish a valuable brand image. Packaging materials for product delivery is, too often, an afterthought. Don’t make the mistake of ignoring important considerations for how your product should be packaged. It can cost you money and customers.
When choosing how to package your product, here are a few things to think about:
Decide how much money to budget. Although boxes are typically all made of some form of paper derivative, prices vary based on type, thickness, color and finish. Large, corrugated boxes for shipping will carry a different price tag than small cardboard boxes. Boxes that are sturdier, dyed, or have glossy finish will convey a sense of quality to a customer, but they will also cost more.
The same goes for bags. Bags for product packaging might be made of paper or plastic. The bags might also be reusable, made of non-disposable woven material, which will cost more.
Whatever packaging you choose, it must be able to protect your what you are selling so that it will arrive to customers undamaged.
This might mean using corrugated boxes. A lot of people call them “cardboard,” but corrugated shipping boxes are made up of three layers that include an inside liner, an outside liner, and fluting with a ruffle in between the two. Corrugated packaging helps cushion what’s inside.
It might mean using poly bags or poly mailers, which are plastic and protect their contents from moisture.
If your product is delicate, shipping supplies such as packing peanuts, bubble wrap and tissue paper might be needed to cushion the product during transportation.
Your business will save money by investing in the proper packaging ahead of time instead of having to pay to replace goods that were damaged during delivery. That not only costs you the price of the damaged product, but also manpower and the price of additional shipping.
Choosing the right-sized box or bag will save headaches later. If your box is too small, the product won’t fit comfortably inside. However, if your container is too big, you will have to spend time and money on shipping supplies such as packing peanuts, bubble wrap and tissue paper to stop the contents from being knocked around.
Keep in mind your company’s branding when choosing packaging. Do you sell higher-end products, or do you appeal to cost-conscious shoppers? Your packaging should align with your brand.
For example, a company that sells expensive jewelry will pay more for quality and frills. It might choose custom boxes hot-stamped with the brand name. The customer will likely remember opening that package, so it should convey a sense of excitement. The box should look like it contains jewelry rather than a toy.
Less frilly and expensive packaging can be used for a less-expensive product that’s not fragile, or a product that’s purely functional and not emotional.
Pulling it together
When making a decision about purchasing packing materials, look at all the factors: quality, quantity, price, safety, package size and branding. Options are available for every need.