Three Big Reasons Why Packaging Matters for Your Brand
One of the biggest drivers of brand impression is packaging. It can be tempting for budget-strapped small businesses to skimp in this area when they’re starting out. But neglecting the importance of packaging can be a mistake that compromises your brand, your product quality and your bottom line. Following are three big reasons why.
#1. Packaging helps to define your brand.
Your packaging plays a critical role in shaping the first impressions customers have of your brand. One recent study found that 94 percent of first impressions are design-related.1 Another found that one-third of consumer decision-making is based on packaging alone.2
In a world where consumers are increasingly adept at evading and ignoring advertising, packaging remains one of the few remaining branding opportunities that is visceral, touchable and unavoidable. Whether you think of Tiffany blue jewelry boxes, refined Barneys black retail bags, Coca-Cola’s famously curved boxes, or Pringles’ snack-stacking cylinders, some brands become as iconic for their packaging as for the products themselves.
Maybe your company’s distinctive package design will come to define your brand. Or maybe you’ll choose instead to lead with attractive, transparent packaging that places the freshness and quality of your products front and center.
Either way, your packaging plays a critical role in how your customers interact with your brand. It can help you differentiate your brand from others through its color, shape, design and style. It can be a potent marketing tool that informs people about the product and your brand. And it can build your brand recognition. The right packaging can transform good consumer experiences with your brand into memorable ones.
#2. Effective packaging protects the customer experience.
On a more technical level, effective packaging protects the product contained within. All packaging options are not created equal when it comes to providing the best protection, at the lowest cost, in the smallest form factor.
When you partner with an experienced, knowledgeable packaging supplier with on-staff packaging engineering experts, the benefits can include packaging that reduces breakage while creating a more positive customer experience and enhancing your bottom line.
According to one survey, 50 percent of consumers would use a company more frequently after a positive customer experience, while 58 percent of consumers will never use a company again after a negative experience.3
Another survey found that only 11 percent of customers are completely satisfied with packaging today. Their top concerns include packaging that is hard to open, excessive packaging, damaged packaging, non-recyclable packaging and ugly packaging.4
In contrast, a product that arrives unbroken in appealing packaging and that is easy and convenient to open results in a positive customer experience that helps encourage repeat purchases.
Effective packaging design can also boost your bottom line by creating savings in areas that go beyond reduced breakage. Use of innovative protective materials and strategic palletization can also help you reduce your overall costs by reducing your material costs and your shipping costs.
#3. Quality packaging is surprisingly important for online sales.
If you predominantly sell online, you may view packaging as an afterthought. Since you’re not competing for eyeballs against other exquisitely designed products on store shelves, it can be easy to underestimate packaging’s branding influence on online shoppers.
In truth, consumers express a clear preference for premium packaging when they purchase online. In one recent survey, 40 percent of shoppers said they would be somewhat more likely or much more likely to purchase from a retailer again if their online purchase came in a gift-like or premium packaging. And of those who said gift-like packaging impacts brand perception, more than 60 percent said this kind of packaging gets them excited about receiving the package.5
Unless you’re able to compete and win solely on price—and most companies can’t—you’ll need to focus on things like the quality of your products, the strength of your brand and providing a better experience.
Packaging is an important element of delivering this experience. Even Coca-Cola boosted sales by 2.5 percent after a decade of decreasing sales with its Share a Coke campaign featuring cans and bottles featuring popular names.6
You might not take personalization to this level, but your packaging space does represent an opportunity to reinforce your brand, tell customers about your products, and speak directly to target demographics more successfully.
If you’re a small company that relies significantly on e-commerce, your packaging might be the first and only interaction that customers have with your brand. The cost of custom packaging is modest compared to other traditional forms of marketing, and advances in material design and digital printing technology makes this option more affordable every day.
Ultimately, packaging represents low-hanging fruit that can pay big dividends for your business. You can often increase the efficiency of your packaging for cost savings and build your brand through custom packaging at the same time. The result is packaging that works better, looks better and contributes to the success of your business for big impact at minimal expense.
Contact our Cogent team today to learn how we can help you craft the right packaging program to build your brand, protect your products and nourish your success.
5 Dotcom Distribution eCommerce Packaging Study 2016