Do you remember the first time you met your partners’ parents? You were probably a little stressed – you know you only get one chance at a first impression– and first impressions last a long long time!
Well, consider for a moment, that you are the product that you’re selling. Your partner’s parents are your customer. And, they’re very excited to meet you.
What first impression do you (your products) leave with your in-laws (your customer?) Ok, so enough with the analogies, let’s switch to a real-life situation.
The way you package your product is the same as your appearance when you first meet the parents. If you’re delivering your products to your customer in anything other than a package that blows the mind of your customer, you’re selling yourself (and your business) out.
In this article, you’ll see 6 ways that unique packaging can help create that killer initial impression. So here’s why you need nice packaging to accompany your product on its travels:
1 – It compliments your sustainable branding
Environmental conservation, and not taking away from the earth are becoming more common morals than many small brands base themselves on.
If you’re one of these brands, using environmentally friendly packaging can prove to your customers that the environment is important to every facet of your business, not just the actual product.
Many e-commerce mailer boxes are made from a minimum of 80% recycled cardboard. This means that in a previous life, your e-commerce packaging was empty toilet roll, a cereal box or a kid’s school book. The remaining 20% is soy-based glue and vegetable-based inks.
Cardboard boxes don’t need to be bright and fancy with a million colours in order to stand out. They complement natural, organic textures, too. White print on the natural kraft texture of cardboard creates a natural, down to earth feeling.
Take a look at the image below to see how Polu, manufacturer of reusable bamboo fibre coffee cups, use white on kraft to complement their sustainable image:
But packaging sustainability isn’t just about materials – it’s about reducing single-use items. Below, you can see how Spanish candy brand Le Candy created custom packaging that doubles as entertainment for their target audience – kids!
2 – It creates a consistent branding experience
When you see the latest Ford advertised on TV and in print, you’ll see the company logo. You go into the dealer and you’ll see the logo. The logo is also on the front of the car, on the inside of the car, and even in the owner’s manual of the car.
The branding is consistent, and it’s everywhere. It makes the consumer know that they’re in the right place every time that you interact with the product.
And the same should happen to your brand.
When you present the same logo, colours and typography on your social media pages, your web store, on your packaging and your product, you create that consistent branding.
That familiarity helps you create a professional image, and reminds your customer that they’re interacting with a wider brand, rather than just a single product.
3 – It sets you apart from your competition
Imagine there are 2 identical hotels next to each other. The rooms look the same, same facilities, the same price, they’re a carbon copy of each other.
Except one has a doorman. A person whose sole job it is to greet you and make you feel welcome.
Which hotel do you think would get more looks from passers-by? Which hotel would make its customers feel like staying there was the right decision?
And that’s what custom packaging is –it’s the doorman that adds a little extra something that your competitor doesn’t. This is even more important if you’re in a competitive niche where brands compete on price.
If you can absorb as little as £0.46 per unit, you’re able to deliver a product in quality packaging and offer value, rather than lower your prices in a race to the bottom.
Not to mention that correct sized packaging can help save you shipping costs.
4 – It’s more than just a box
When you think ‘packaging’, you think of a standard square or rectangle-ish box that’s self-closing. Maybe if you’re fancy, you’re talking about a box with a lid.
But packaging is so much more than that. It can be a place for creatives to stretch their minds and innovate on that standard cardboard box.
If you’re selling durable textiles, a cardboard box might be overkill. Consider sending your products in a personalised mailing bag.
If you’re selling dry goods, such as tea bags or other individually packaged products, consider using a short cardboard tube. The tubular design gives you one flat surface and no edges to play with!
No matter what you’re sending or what you’re sending it in, seal it all up with custom tape with your brand’s logo.
It might not seem like might, but it’s the little details like custom tape, no empty space inside the box and a little extra care that stand out to your customer!
5 – The unboxing experience is a powerful asset
Remember that excitement you had as a kid when you were unwrapping your gifts at Christmas?That thrill of tearing the paper off, only to see the box and be blown away that this thing is now yours!What a feeling.
That excitement (and often anxiety) is an emotion that you can put into your customer – perhaps just a less of it than a kid at Christmas!
Consider, for a moment, that you’re sending a t-shirt in a box. A simple, relatively cheap product. But now you:
- fold it nicely
- wrap it in custom printed tissue paper
- put it in a box that has your brand’s logo on it
- along with a little handwritten thank-you note
- and seal it with a branded sticker.
Suddenly, your simple product has gone from ‘getting a t-shirt in the mail’ to having its own unboxing experience.
This experience will help your product and brand name have positive connotations in the mind of your customer – and is a great way to retain a customer!
6 – It’s another marketing channel
What makes your brand different? Why should someone buy from you rather than your competitor?
Take this reason, put it into words and put it on your packaging.
Your product packaging is a marketing channel and the most powerful way to remind your customer why they brought from you in the first place.
A good business is based on selling a good product that people want. Your customer picked your product over competitors for a reason. Put these reasons on your packaging, and remind your customers why you’re unique.
This means that before your customer even has even seen the physical product, they’re reminded that they made the right choice and that it indeed was the best possible choice.
As you’ve just seen, the packaging is more than just a pretty box. It’s a powerful way to thrust your branding literally into the hands of your customer and make sure that they remember your name.
If you want to get started in the world of custom packaging, head over to Packhelp, find the product that best fits what you’re selling and start designing!
Phil is a hairy Aussie living in Warsaw, Poland. When he’s not talking about fandangle packaging for Packhelp, he’s writing about Polish culture on his blog expatspoland while his dog sleeps by his side.