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Custom Packaging: Do's and Don'ts

Written By: Leslie Taylor | Article Date: June 22, 2022

You’ve got a great product ready to roll out. Now all you need is the perfect packaging design. Before coming up with designs and deciding on the material, it’s important to consider the important role packaging plays for your business.

Custom packaging is not only meant for protecting your products, but it should also cultivate customer loyalty and increase brand awareness. There are a lot of packaging solutions out there, but do you know which suits your business and budget? The key to saving money is a strategy that avoids packaging pitfalls and unnecessary spending that could cost you in the long run.

Before getting caught up in the details, here are some of the most common packaging mistakes and the best packaging tips you should keep in mind.

Top Packaging Mistakes to Avoid

Packaging Dont's

The Packaging is too big or too small

Yes, size matters. Too much free space inside the package causes unnecessary jiggling and can damage your product during shipping. It would cost you more to keep buying extra cushioning materials or replace the package than simply getting a box that fits. Not to mention a customer will find it underwhelming to open a large box but find a significantly smaller product inside.

The Packaging creates excessive waste

Packaging should be secure, especially for fragile items, but some take it too far with layers of bubble wrap, void fillers, and too much plastic. It’s important to strike a balance between functionality and eco-friendly, especially for environmentally conscious consumers. You can save more cash using a mailer box or padded envelopes for non-fragile goods like tools, books, and clothes.

Skipping research and testing

Packaging can make or break a purchase. It’s important to note that while your packaging looks excellent on its own, it may fall flat when placed on a shelf with other competitors. As a brand or business owner, it’s always tempting to immediately implement your design ideas. However, you just might benefit more and spend less if you take a step back and study packaging options that appeal to both your budget and target market.

Not giving much thought into shipping

Without a shipping strategy, you may be losing more money than you think. For example, if you’re delivering different items but only to one recipient it makes sense to put everything in one large shipping box. However, this method costs a few dollars more than mailing each in smaller, separate mailers. Check your carrier rates before deciding on the packaging.

Delivering a disappointing custom experience

Packaging should bring out the perceived value of the product. 72% of Americans agree that the design and materials of a product’s packaging often influence their purchase decision. No matter how great your product may be, low-quality packaging makes it look cheap and will put off a lot of your customers and affect future sales.

Top Money-Saving Packaging Tips

Packaging Do's

Know your audience first

Research first, design later. This may seem like a no-brainer but take the time to study and test what type of packaging piques the interest of your target market. Should your materials be recyclable? Does the quality communicate your brand and beliefs? Choosing the right kind of packaging helps attract the right customers.

Check your packaging requirements

Is your packaging safe? Does it comply with industry regulations and legal guidelines? There’s nothing worse than spending money on quality packaging only to find out you need a different material, or it doesn’t have the right labeling information. For regulated items like food products, be sure to check what rules apply before deciding on the packaging material and design.

Optimization is key

Your packaging needs to be cost-efficient from production, storage, display, delivery, up until it reaches your customers. For in-store displays, custom packaging sleeves are a cheaper option than boxes but just as effective. For shipping, focus on keeping your packages small, durable, and light. It’s a good idea to diversify your packages for different types of products so you don’t spend more on average dimensional volume rates. Some products may be small and durable enough to go in custom pouches than boxes. Use tamper-proof water-activated tape (WAT) to seal boxes with just one strip. Layers of regular shipping tape add more weight.

Get creative with Branding

Custom doesn’t have to mean expensive. If you’re working with a smaller budget, there are other ways to bring your brand forward than printed custom boxes. Stand out even during shipping with branded packing tape. Even something as simple as stamping your logo or printed custom stickers to a plain mailer box can get customers excited as soon as they see your package on their doorstep.

The details make the unboxing experience

There’s plenty of ways you can make packaging share-worthy on social media without breaking the bank. Print custom tissue paper for that gifting experience. Include hangtags with product details and thank you notes. Custom stickers also make great freebies and encourage customers to be brand advocates.

For easy, affordable, and customizable packaging, look no further than NextDayFlyers. We offer packaging solutions that go a long way. Our easy-to-use website lets you customize every detail, from choosing a custom size, using sustainable materials, and executing the most intricate design.

There’s no “one-size-fits-all” answer to packaging. A great deal of planning and research is involved but once you find the perfect packaging for your business, the benefits are tenfold.

Click on the infographic to zoom.Packaging Do's and Dont's

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Infographic sources:
What’s the Real Cost of In-Transit Damage? - Conner Industries
2020 Dotcom Distribution eCommerce Consumer Study: Adapting to the Rapidly Changing eCommerce Landscape
Packaging Matters - WestRock
5 Costly Shipping Mistakes You Need to Avoid - Shippit
Most Americans Say That the Design of a Product’s Packaging Often Influences Their Purchase Decisions - Ipsos