Ecommerce packaging takes on many different forms.
Available from simple bubble wrap to more complex cardboard boxes with multiple inserts that allow you to customize your package according to what you’re selling and who your customers are.
Packaging is important for any business.
But it’s especially crucial for eCommerce stores because the design of the package can make or break a sale.
The way you present your products in their packaging will reflect how potential buyers perceive them. So it’s important that you carefully consider all aspects of designing an eye-catching package.
You don’t want people to be disappointed when they open up their purchase to only find some boxes wrapped in bubble wrap! That’s why this article will cover everything from materials used in packaging material to the different types of packaging available.
Table of contents
- What Is Ecommerce Product Packaging?
- Why Does Ecommerce Packaging Matter?
- Types Of Product Packaging
- Ecommerce Packaging Solutions and Ideas
- eCommerce Packaging – the first impression of your product
- Tissue paper with bows to make it special
- Filler: the best way for cushioning products
- Stickers with Personality
- Promotional material or a business card
- Packing Slip
- Custom notes to go the extra mile
- Easy-to-follow educational resources
- Step up your ecommerce packaging with a custom tape
- Free samples or gifts of interest
- Examples Of Ecommerce Brands With Great Packaging
- Final Thoughts On Ecommerce Packaging
What Is Ecommerce Product Packaging?
Essentially, product packaging is the material that is used to cover and protect products before they are delivered to the store. The most common form of product protection is wrapping by plastics, paper, or composite materials. Some products are boxed for protection according to their size, weight, or delicate nature.
Other products, such as a wine bottle or a grocery item, can be sold without any additional packaging after being first wrapped in a clear plastic bag.
When you think about it, the packaging for a product is what makes that particular item unique. Packaging can be anything from its exterior or interior design to indicate quality. Also, advertise features of an entire line-up so shoppers will fall in love with all products you offer.
A lot goes into creating these packages.
This includes evaluating how customers interact with them as well as giving off some marketing messages through custom graphics/text on boxes.
Ecommerce packaging is an opportunity to provide your customer with everything they need for a good experience. It includes what you show and what people interact with when opening up their package. So it can be as creative or simple as needed!
Why Does Ecommerce Packaging Matter?
It seems that more and more consumers are sharing their experiences with goods on social media. A recent survey found 38% of buyers have done so. Which is why we see the #unboxing trend 1.3 million times each day through Instagram!
This provides an opportunity for businesses to build brand awareness by providing a great experience at point-of-sale in-store and online before purchases even happen.
Quality packaging supplies are a must for any business, large or small. They make an impression on customers and potential clients with their first interactions online, setting your brand apart from others in its category.
Quality retail box design also allows you to highlight certain features about your product, such as size, shape, etc., giving it greater visibility among browsing shoppers.
Even if you’re selling something that isn’t public-friendly, like an “industrial lubricant”, your customers should still be greeted by a clean packing design to help them feel comfortable.
You’ll want to make sure you’ve got the proper packaging for what you’re selling. But there are also many other factors to consider when designing the package, such as who your customers are and what type of product you’re selling. Because there are several alternatives, you should thoroughly think about your choices before making a selection.
Types Of Product Packaging
The first considers the type of item you are selling. Is it a heavy item that would require multiple inserts, or is it a light item that can be enclosed in a small container? Cardboard boxes and simple bubble wrap envelopes. For example, work well for lighter items and larger items that do not need to be seen right away upon opening the package.
Various insert types allow you to customize your package by adding inserts for protection, highlighting features of the product, and adding air cushioning for items with delicate surfaces. The materials used also vary depending on the type of product. Fragile glass products should be placed in foam inserts, so they don’t break during delivery.
eCommerce Packaging Boxes
Corrugated boxes come in many different shapes and sizes and can be customized for any use. You can find them at almost any office or shipping supply store.
The most well-known type of corrugated box is the pizza box. These boxes are lightweight and durable enough to withstand a pizza delivery without being crushed. They also have a lot of space inside to hold large orders of pizzas with ease.
Padded mailers are the modern way of mailing packages. They are created with lightweight, sturdy material that can be wrapped around items to protect them during transit.
These packages work best for shipping small, flat, or delicate items such as jewelry and handcrafted goods. You can also add extra protection with bubble wrap to your package, but it’s not as eco-friendly as recyclable paper.
They are often used for fragile items, but they aren’t just for fragile items. Padded mailers provide a less expensive alternative to more expensive packaging materials like wood, metal, and plastic.
Ecommerce Packaging Bags And Envelopes
Bags are useful for sending lightweight items, such as toys or small gadgets. They can also be used as a way to present a more informal product. Envelopes are best-suited for making an impression on customers by incorporating personalized flap stickers or unique paper materials into the design.
Custom Product Packaging
Custom packaging is a great method to offer customers unique unboxing experiences. For example, a solid, cylindrical box with a single opening can do wonders for your products. Not only does it give you more space to label the outside of the box, but there are plenty of different ways that you can set it up inside.
Every business needs to satisfy its customers’ experience with a personalized touch. There are several options available when it comes to customizing products, such as tissue paper rolls, gift wrap, packing slips, and more.
Not only does this type of packaging provide you with more options for marketing and branding, but it also allows you to decorate your box in various colors and patterns. Thus, helping promote your business in innovative ways, giving your consumers a delightful experience.
Ecommerce Packaging Solutions and Ideas
eCommerce Packaging – the first impression of your product
Your eCommerce packaging should be tailored to your target audience and your product’s branding. That means you can spend as little or as much as you want on it-from mere paper to fancier materials. The point is that it needs to feel like a physical representation of who you are as a company.
To see how this works in practice, let’s look at an example from the world of fashion retailing: Everlane. Everlane has been praised for its simple, no-frills packaging for its minimalist clothing line. But while some critics have questioned its effectiveness, others have responded positively to its simplicity and lack of advertising noise.
Do you have any green materials to use?
You could create your own eco-friendly poly mailer by using plant-based materials, such as fibers from mushrooms and coconuts.
Tissue paper with bows to make it special
Sheets of tissue paper are an excellent choice for your product packaging. Retailers use this type of packaging because it’s easy to customize. Tying a bow on top of your gift is the perfect way to ensure that not only will they be excited about opening it, but also when you show up with an unexpected treat. For something really special, use tissue paper in colors or designs tailored just for them!
For example, you can wrap your product in one sheet, two sheets, or three sheets-you can even wrap five or six sheets around one item!
Tissue paper is also very affordable, which means that it offers great value for the price.
Filler: the best way for cushioning products
One of the best ways to use filler is by filling your packaging with it.
This ecommerce packaging idea can be made from a variety of materials, including crinkle paper (colored or brown) and excelsior (wood fibers).
The filler provides a cushion against the product, protecting it during transit and preventing product damage. If you’re looking for a quick way to add some material to your package, a filler packaging idea is a way forward.
Stickers with Personality
Adhesive stickers are one of the most overlooked and underestimated packaging materials. These are inexpensive and customizable with logos, website URLs, company colors, or even custom graphics.
When applied to the outside of a box or package, these versatile stickers can help your brand stand out on any shelf by creating a dynamic, eye-catching design or use them as part of a promotional campaign.
Promotional material or a business card
Business cards and promotional material are two ways to get your company’s name out there. A business card is not only an easy and affordable introduction of yourself or your company, but it can act as a conversation starter.
Most people keep their business cards on them at all times. So when they find themselves in a position where they may need your contact, they always have something handy.
Adding a packing slip can really make the difference. Providing your customer with a little extra thing will increase the chances that they are happy. Put in some time researching what would be the best thing for your eCommerce to send out.
It’s common to include a receipt or packing slip in your shipment. But many Ecommerce store owners don’t take advantage of this as a branding opportunity.
Place the item at a point of contact that makes sense. It’s not going to be what first catches their eye, so make sure you put some thought into where and how they’ll see this info.
Printing a packing slip is an easy way to make your business more memorable and creative. You can customize the content of this slip by adding or removing elements, like logos or product images.
And if you’re looking for an even greater impact, include coupon codes inside. The right design will draw in customers who want what they see while offering incentives that may encourage them to return again soon with friends – all through one simple idea!
Custom notes to go the extra mile
Handwritten notes are a great way to connect with customers. They show that you care and there is someone behind your business, not just an automated system. The tone of voice should be conversational enough for the reader. But enthusiastic at the same time to make your customer feel important and appreciated.
Easy-to-follow educational resources
A simple way to make your product more accessible is by including instructions in the box. You want customers who purchase from you to know what they need for their specific situation. So it’s important that users can get started as quickly and easily as possible when using a new item right out of the package.
Educational materials can be anything from instructional resources to informational checklists-anything that customers might find interesting and helpful about the aspects of your products.
By sharing educational resources with customers, you build trust and communicate support for your products by continuing the conversation after purchase!
Step up your ecommerce packaging with a custom tape
When you’re trying to stand out from the crowd, it’s time to start customizing all parts of your packaging. Start with tape! You can create custom colors, shapes, or even flair with your branding on them, and they’ll be sure to grab clients’ attention in a sea of boxes.
Free samples or gifts of interest
You may also consider including a free sample of other products. Ideally, you’ll choose something your shopper is likely to be interested in. For example, when people purchase an Apple product, the company gives 1-year free access to complimentary Apple TV as an opportunity to cross-sell new products with them (subscriptions in this case).
I always try to send a sample of what I sell, or at least a coupon code, with my packages. If it’s something that people can smell or touch, I will include one of those. I’ve also been known to throw in a charm bracelet or even a hand-written card. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant, but these little things show customers that you care about them.
Eco friendly packaging ideas
Eco-friendly bath bomb packaging
I love bath bombs and I guess so do you!
Usually, these products are associated with being premium and natural and hence we need some solid eco friendly bath bomb packaging to show off the amazingness of the beautiful products you’ve got.
The easiest way to find eco friendly packaging for bath bombs is to start narrowing it down to what a bath bomb is actually made out of. The other factor is the bath bomb eCommerce factor which means that it will have to be travelling well.
I’ve seen many types of eco friendly bath bomb packing, starting with all kinds of sustainable premium papers such as kraft paper or parchment paper or even recycled fabric, however, most of these types of packaging will be too soft which means that your bath bombs might get exposed to moisture or even get damaged in the mail.
Therefore, I would only stick to two types of eco friendly bath bomb packaging that are eCommerce friendly and those are burlap bags or eco friendly bath bomb boxes.
Burlap bags as eco friendly bath bomb packaging
Burlap bags are eco friendly and reusable and they’re also easy to get in all kinds of shapes and forms. You can either make your own or you can have a look at the selection on Etsy to support another small eCommerce business.
Recycled paper boxes are the best type of eco friendly bath bomb packaging
My most favourite type of eco friendly bath bomb packaging are eco friendly boxes because they are reusable, protect your premium product and can also presuppose multiple products being added to cart rather than selling your bath bombs one by one.
The other reason why I love these types of boxes is that your customers can use them for a different purposes as well and if you put your branding on the box, they will literally think of you day in and day out (not just when they’re in the bathtub). I’m sure there are many companies that make small boxes for your eco friendly bath bomb packaging and this is one of the packaging companies that caught our attention.
Eco friendly soap packaging and biodegradable soap packaging
If you’re selling natural soap you’re probably looking into biodegradable soap packaging (or eco friendly soap packaging) to complement your premium product.
Just like any other type of packaging, biodegradable soap packaging is essentially the same as compostable and you can resemble paper or plastic.
There are many companies that claim their products are eco friendly and sustainable and as much as many of them are made from recycled materials, they’re not always biodegradable so make sure you watch out for that.
EcoEnclose sells sustainable packaging material and they have a wide range of small boxes, bags and sachets that are ideal for biodegradable soap packaging.
Another company that specialises in compostable ecommerce packaging solutions that could be a good form of biodegradable soap packaging is Elevate Packaging although they seem to specialise in bags and pouches rather than in boxes.
If you want to support micro-businesses, makers and creators, you can find a lot of biodegradable soap packaging on Etsy.
Personally, when looking for biodegradable soap packaging, I like to browse through Etsy to get ideas first and then once I chose my particular type of packaging, I start looking further into which company would be the best one to partner with.
Before you order a big batch, you might want to order a sample for the packaging to test it out and make sure that it’s biodegradable and that it will be suitable to carry your product and can represent your brand really well.
The other thing I found on Etsy and really liked as an idea for biodegradable soap packaging was natural bubble paper made out of sustainable materials.
Depending on the specifications of your product, this type of biodegradable soap packaging could be an extra luxury added to your product.
Examples Of Ecommerce Brands With Great Packaging
Mistral Luxury Soap
You might be surprised to learn that men sweat more than women. At the same time, most soap in stores is still designated for female use and can include scents like green tea or ylang-ylang with its rich aroma.
Soaps designed specifically towards gentlemen are rarer but do exist; one example of this would be a bottle shaped like alcohol (or similar male items: wrench/gun) containing “expensive” smelling body wash, which many people just need as regular clean up after washing themselves applies.
The input discusses how there isn’t much variety in choosing between masculine-oriented soaps vs feminine ones, even though males certainly seem.
Haddrell’s of Cambridge
Haddrell’s company creates the most luxurious honey in New Zealand, using sustainable methods to do so. To make their product more appealing, they enlisted PORTER for help designing an elegant box housing it all and giving off luxury vibes.
The design team was able to create something special with gold foil details on top of spot UV-treated surfaces, making anyone want this premium honeysuckle flavoring straight away – no doubt one sip deserved another, right?
Otherland is more than a scented candle company, it´s a brand with personality. Known for their elegant packaging style, with popping colors and beautiful patterns.
Some of their box designs are only available for certain occasions, such as Mother´s Day. This makes engaged and excited about the product.
A brand that has memorable customer experiences at the core of everything they do.
The Nordstrom-ownded personal styling brand TrunkClub takes subscription boxes and customer unboxing experience to a whole new level.
This brand gives customers the “I can´t wait to open” experience. Once they open it, they´ll find the contents are carefully laid out in a logical order. Not only that, all orders include a personal handwritten letter from a stylist, explain the selection. It makes the unboxing experience memorable and exclusive.
Subcriptions boxes are definitely a niche offering. Many ecommerce businesses are starting to invest in this type of products. Birchbox focuses on the beauty and make up niche, selling personalized selections of cosmetic products. And they´re nailing it!
What makes them stand out is their packaging design. Each month, the brand offers a specific theme for their designs. This makes receiving the package an exciting and novel experience.
Each box is unique to your order, making you feel special since no one box is like yours.
Final Thoughts On Ecommerce Packaging
Ecommerce business owners must know that their packaging design can make or break a sale, and it is essential to select one that reflects your image.
There are many different package designs available-from simple bubble wrap to more complex cardboard boxes with multiple inserts-that allow you to customize your package according to what you’re selling and who your customers are.
Let me know in the comments. How are you planning to step up your packaging game?