Ecommerce and DTC Packaging Options and Upgrades—Is it Time for a Structural Redesign?
Our previous post covered the importance of rebranding and graphic redesigns. But it’s important to note that a redesign could also be structural in nature, making a change to the box size, adding new sizes, adding internal packaging, or adding a new feature, like a resealable closure. While all of these forms of redesign are different, they all essentially arise from the same key concept. Listening to your customer. Often your customer’s feedback will clue you in to what (if any) changes or improvements can be made to your existing packaging. But the feedback could also be internal—anywhere from marketing to fulfillment. How can you save time or cost during fulfillment? How can you save shipping expenses? Can you better protect your products? Can you better present them? Are you delivering the unboxing experience you want? These are all important questions that factor into a redesign, and the most popular solutions are often more obtainable than you think.
In recent website improvements we’ve made, we added a new page dedicated entirely to internal packaging and inserts. We feel this is one of our strong suits, and frankly, an area many companies choose to avoid. Internal packaging can be challenging, but with years of experience on our side, we’ve created countless designs that balance protection and presentation of a variety of products (glass bottles, paperboard cartons and soda cans to name a few).
You may currently be using loose paper void fill, plastic bubble wrap or any number of other ways of immobilizing your product during shipment. But chances are, if you have the volume to justify potential initial tooling cost, a custom insert solution is affordable and will drastically improve not only the look of your packaging, but also better protect the contents. In many cases, inserts can also be printed, giving you another avenue to promote your branding.
There are many “trends” in packaging, maybe none more popular lately than peel and seal adhesive closure boxes. We’ve seen an uptick in requests for mailers with resealable closure, and we’ve written a recent blog post answering many frequently asked questions. There are a number of reasons to consider adding this feature to a mailer box, including enhanced security, and the ease of 2-way shipments for returns. Aside from customer benefits, there is also an added benefit of reducing labor costs and time during fulfillment.
Changing Box Size(s)
This is something we see with many companies after several months of starting their business. Often times when first launching a product or products, it is not uncommon to be uncertain of exactly what size you need. Many things can change during those first few months of business where you find out exactly what SKUs your customers are ordering, and how many they are ordering. Once you have this information, it becomes much easier to figure out which box size is best for which configurations. (Example: You know you sell a 4 pack as you most popular item, whereas you thought you would be selling the 2 pack. So you can adjust your packaging accordingly). Changing box sizes can lead to great savings on shipping costs, as well as potentially lower your box price if converting over to a smaller mailer. We often write about the concept of how right-sizing your box is always the right approach, but until you have the proper information, it can be very difficult to know what size is the right size for you.
Having said all of that, sometimes it’s impossible to right-size your box. The best size may in fact be more than one size. For instance, you learn you sell a 2 pack and 4 pack most frequently. It may be wasteful and cost prohibitive to ship all of your items in one box that can accommodate both 2 of your products as well as 4. Consider the costs of the void fill you are using to send 2 items in a 4 item box. In cases like these, sometimes it makes more sense to have two boxes. This way you are not over packaging and sending product in a box that’s much larger than needed, leading to expensive shipping costs (for you and your customer) and increasing the likelihood of product damage, not to mention the reaction your customer has when opening the package (unboxing experience). We’ve written several blog posts on this subject, and many companies are guilty of over packaging (even Amazon). The bottom line is, chances are, you do not have Amazon’s budget, so you need to find ways to save costs where you can.
Reducing the Number of Boxes
Yes, this is contrary to what you read above. But keep in mind, no two companies are alike. Their products are unique, and so too are their customers. While one company may benefit and save a fortune from having multiple box sizes, another company may be harmed by it. If you have many SKUs and many boxes to fit each of those, it’s possible that it could be time for you to consolidate and reduce the amount of total boxes you’re using. Maybe you’re spending too much storing boxes you never or rarely use. Maybe you can send multiple items in a box you were previously using for one item. You won’t know until you ask yourself the question.
There are several products which lend themselves to a very specific packaging solution. You wouldn’t ship glass bottles in a paper envelope, for example. But some products, like clothing, or other flexible items could ship in any number of different packaging solutions. We have several companies we work with that have both branded mailer boxes and mailer envelopes. They’ve discovered over months or sometimes years what products are best suited for each solution, and have adjusted accordingly. Maybe you’ve always shipped in an RSC box and it’s time to consider die cut mailers. Maybe you want to upgrade from an envelope to a mailer box. Whatever the case may be, it could be time to redesign with a new packaging solution.
We have created millions of boxes for thousands of customers, and we’re experienced in all of the above solutions. The only way to know for sure which (if any) are best for you and your products is to contact us via the link or number below.
Please Contact Us Today
We’re happy to lead you to a packaging solution that works for you. As always, if you have any questions, one of our branded packaging advisors is standing by to assist, with decades of experience behind them. Want to know more about custom packaging options? Please call us today at 630-551-1700 or contact us via email at www.SalazarPackaging.com.