You’re about to launch a new product, so choosing the right packaging supplies and solutions is a challenge. Not only do you want your product to be well-protected when it travels from you to the consumer, but you also want it to be easily identified, appealing, and do a good job of marketing and representing your brand.
Of course, your packaging supplies need to meet your budget constraints too.
Packaging solutions: determine your product’s requirements
Start with your product. Is it easily damaged? Does it need to be refrigerated? Must it be delivered within a certain time? Do you need additional packaging—will the product be packaged, then shipped in cartons, for example? What about cushioning supplies and other inserts?
When you’re choosing supplies, you have basic requirements.
They may include:
- Your budget;
- Security in transport;
- Ease of use of the materials by your workers and suitability for your current machinery;
- Printing requirements;
- Reliability of supply;
- Sustainability and ecological-friendliness.
Make a list of your essential requirements. Research your competition too—has their packaging been called into question? Have they altered their packaging recently?
Let’s look at your requirements for packaging supplies in more detail.
1. Packaging supplies and marketing your product: your budget
Did you know that your packaging can be a powerful marketing channel?
When considering your budget for packaging supplies, look at the packaging as part of your product’s overall marketing strategy. Not only can your packaging appeal to your target customers, but it can also promote its primary selling points, and promote your brand as well.
You may want to limit the budget for packaging, but this can be a mistake. Many more people will see your products’ packaging than will buy your product: you need your packaging to be appropriate and memorable if possible.
Research indicates that a product’s packaging hugely affects the consumer’s decision to buy.
If you’re selling a luxury product, your packaging needs to meet the consumer’s expectations. Similarly, if your product is aimed at an environmentally conscious audience, your packaging supplies must reflect this too.
2. Your packaging supplies and shipping considerations
You have little control over how your products will be handled during shipping, so your packaging supplies are vital. Not only do damages during shipping affect your bottom line, they affect your customers’ perceptions of your company too.
Equally, although you want your products to be well-protected during shipping, your packaging supplies need to be lightweight, otherwise, shipping charges will increase. Increased charges will lead to customer resistance and lower sales.
When looking at shipping your products, be aware that you require several different kinds of packaging supplies:
- The product’s outer packaging, which usually consists of a rigid box or other containers;
- Cushioning materials to protect the product from damage resulting from its movement within the outer container. Ideally, the cushioning material will be biodegradable, sustainable, or recyclable.
- Sealing supplies: sealing and strapping tapes, which can be printed with your company’s marketing message, branding, and logo.
No matter how long or short a product’s journey from you to your customer, consider these requirements when choosing packaging solutions:
- Product weight: a heavy product needs solid, heavy packaging. A light product on the other hand, like a shirt or dress, could be packed in a light plastic bag.
- Product size: ensure that there’s room for your product in the box. It could be damaged if it touches the sides of the box, so choose the appropriate cushioning material.
- Product value. High-value products need extra packaging protection: consider packaging your product’s container within another box.
3. Your packaging supplies and sustainability
Many large companies have announced the dates by which their packaging will be sustainable or renewable.
Today sustainable packaging is more than trendy: it’s becoming essential. Consumers are aware of recycling and waste and are sensitive to excessive and unsuitable packaging.
But what’s involved when packaging is considered “sustainable”? Packaging can meet the requirements for sustainability in various ways.
For example, the packaging may:
- Use renewable energy in its manufacture, transportation, and recycling process;
- Use recyclable or renewable materials. Some sustainable packaging uses 100% recycled materials;
- Be made from materials which are considered healthy and “clean”;
- Be reusable. For example, some health-conscious companies give customers credit for returning product containers.
Does it all seem too complicated? It needn’t be. The two major elements of sustainability are reducing packaging materials and minimizing waste. So, a common-sense approach when choosing to package means you’re doing your part for sustainability.
Your customers will appreciate your efforts to make your packaging sustainable. Consider labeling those parts of your packaging which are recyclable, or which can be reused.
Choose the right packaging solution for your products
Although finding the right and best packaging supplies for your products can be challenging, they can be rewarding too. You may find unexpected opportunities for marketing your brand and products.