How to Measure the Dimensions of a Box

Written By: Leslie Taylor | Article Date: March 03, 2022


Product Packaging


Custom box packaging is more than just conceptualizing an eye-catching design that would help your product stand out on the shelves. After all, what good would a well-designed custom box do if it can’t protect its contents well? One way to make sure that your box serves its primary purpose is to get the measurements right for your package.



Units of Measurement to Keep in Mind

Anyone with a ruler, a measuring tape, or a meter stick on hand can come up with an accurately sized box as long as they know what needs to be measured. Make sure to take note of the exact measurements instead of estimates.

  • Take the length first. This is the side of the box with the longest flap.
  • Adjacent to the length is the width, or the side with the shorter flap.
  • For the height/depth, measure any of the sides vertically from top crease to bottom crease.

Identifying which side is which is a breeze for square boxes since all three are almost equal, but for tall and long boxes, this can be quite confusing. Keep in mind that the height is the largest dimension for tall boxes, while the length is largest for long boxes.


Which Sides to Measure and When

Another factor to consider is whether you should measure the interior or exterior sides of the box. Custom box packaging providers such as NextDayFlyers will ask for the inner dimensions to ensure that your products fit snugly.

The outer dimensions, on the other hand, are necessary for shipping. Keep in mind that the numbers will be different from the interior dimensions since you will have to consider the box’s thickness in your measurements, especially if it’s made of thick material such as corrugated cardboard.

Due to the rapid growth of the ecommerce industry, couriers have shifted to calculating shipping costs based on the box’s dimensional weight, also referred to as DIM weight or volumetric weight. This move allows shipping service providers to maximize the available space in their cargos by discouraging customers from shipping small items in large containers.

To determine the volumetric weight, multiply the exterior length, width, and height of the box to get the volume, then divide this by the dimensional factor which differs from every shipping service. FedEx, UPS, and USPS determine the final billed weight as the larger value between the DIM weight and the actual physical weight of the package.


Benefits of Getting a Right-Sized Custom Box

There are several benefits to finding the right measurements for your package aside from guaranteed protection:

  1. Since shipping companies are more mindful of the dimensional weight compared to the actual weight of your package, a custom box with an accurate fit can help you save on shipping costs.
  2. An appropriately sized custom box eliminates excess material during production and takes up less space during transit, which means less carbon footprint.
  3. Customers are more likely to appreciate custom product packaging that is not wasteful and excessive.

Get Your Right-Sized Custom Boxes Fast from NextDayFlyers

After learning the right way to measure a box and the benefits of getting it in the right size, the next step would be to find a reliable box provider. NextDayFlyers has you covered. We provide recyclable boxes customized to your exact dimensions right when you need them. With our easy-to-use online design tool, you can add a personal touch to your custom boxes. We also offer bulk printing and rush production to cater to your urgent packaging needs.


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