Goods make the world go round, and one of the key things that can help make a product turn into a bonafide success is the packaging: get it wrong and the consequences could be drastic. Because after all, first impressions are everything these days. Keep in mind that your customers' experience with your brand is not just limited to your online presence; it goes way beyond that and covers the in-person experience with your product. And before they even get a chance to see your product, what they will be met with is the box that the product comes in.
Maybe it is a plain brown box with the company's logo on it, or maybe it is an eye-catching, high-quality package with impressive designs. Regardless, e-commerce merchants who wish for their brand to stand out must incorporate their business identity into each shipment.
The variety of packaging solutions in the market is becoming increasingly complex, making it difficult to choose the ideal box from an array of sizes, materials, types and finish options. However, with the following simple guide put together by U-Pack, you will soon be on your way to choosing the right product packaging.
Choosing the Right Shipping Box
1. Size & Structural Integrity
First and foremost, you should do get the size of your shipping box right to avoid a series of issues. Using too large a box will only result in excess shipping charges for the space that it occupies, whereas choosing a small shipping box can cause the product to get damaged by the time it reaches the destination.
Your box size should precisely match the product that you are shipping, with a little extra room to add protective fillers. Keep 3 inches of padding in your shipping boxes as this will help safeguard items which could be damaged by daily handling (scuff marks, dirt, labels).
If you are selling obscurely shaped products, go for shipping boxes that accommodate each of them. What you put around and inside the box all play a critical role in minimizing the impact of transit. U-Pack suggests adding sufficient polystyrene foam ensuring that your boxes are correctly labeled, as it will go a long way in protecting your product.
In addition to the size, the structural integrity of your box should also be perfect at the beginning of the shipping process. There is a wide assortment of types, weights, and strengths of boxes to choose from, along with a variety of shipping supplies, cushioning materials, and appropriate labeling.
2. Ability to Travel Well
Besides getting the right box, your shipping boxes need to be able to travel from one point to another with minimal damage and with ease. If your products are fragile or bulky, you will need to pay attention to materials that are specially designed for strength. On the other hand, if your products are just going to be sitting on the store shelves, then you will need to focus more on the exterior display; this is where a high-quality print finish (maybe a UV-treated, liquid-based, high-gloss coating) will be a useful option.
According to experts, it costs way more to replace damaged products than spend on sufficient packaging protection. For items that are a little more heavy-duty, shipping boxes made from a hard-bearing material like a corrugated board is a worthwhile option since it offers incredible support.
Just like you wouldn't want to live in a house made of metal (think about the temperature in summers), you wouldn't also want your goods to be placed in the wrong material either. When choosing the caliper, (the thickness or weight) of your shipping box material, you might want to consider what is ideal for your product.
- Paperboard - this lightweight material offers fantastic printing results and is ideal for dairy, food, pharmaceuticals, hardware, and cosmetic items.
- Corrugated - This flexible yet sturdy material is perfect for heavy or fragile items, produce, e-commerce packages, shipping cartons, and subscription boxes.
The look of your box will depend on the variant you pick. Eco mailer boxes are the rawest and most natural option and make a perfect minimalist option. It will attract attention to detail, such as a short catchy phrase or a logo.
You need to make your shipping boxes more memorable, and you can do that by including branded colors, imagery, and/or placing in all elements of your business. Customized boxes that appeal to your audience can also enhance brand awareness and leave a lasting impact. In fact, if you play your cards right, some customers might even end up loving the box so much that they hold on to it for other purposes.