The Role of Packaging Design in Shipping

Image of Packaging Design in Shipping
Shipping has become an essential part of retail today, and with online shopping continuing to grow, there is no sign of that changing. Businesses spend a lot of time, and money, refining the process of getting goods to their customers, from the kind of shipping options offered to the customer cost. This all makes a difference, with the best shipping services proven to increase customer satisfaction and with it, the potential for repeat custom.

But one area that can have a huge impact on shipping, including cost, damage prevention and the customer experience, is packaging. Yet that is something we often take for granted, which is a mistake. Packaging design should be an integral part of the supply solution, designed to enhance the shipping experience for your customers.

Found out why packaging design matters and how you can make the most from your product packaging.
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The Best Packaging Ideas

Packaging has always been about presenting your product in the best way, standing out on the shelf in a store and providing the right experience for new owners. But today it has to do all that and more, as so much of our sales are online and require shipping, packaging must also stand up to the rigors of transport solutions of all kinds as well.

With so much competition in every market, keeping control of costs is essential for any business to succeed, and one of the ways that can be done is to find the most effective packaging solution for your products. Not only can the right packaging protect products better, but they can also save on shipping and logistics costs, and even streamline business processes.

The best ideas for packaging take into account how the product is transported, maximizing the product that fits onto a pallet for instance, can save significant sums over time not just in shipping to consumers, but transporting product along the supply chain.

While finding those cost savings is important for every business, product packaging design must never forget that it is also the thing that makes the first impression with a consumer. It is the first thing they see and interact with, so it needs to be intuitive too, and it helps to have some marketing details on the packaging to remind a customer why they were excited to purchase in the first place.

The perfect packaging then, manages to protect the product without taking up too much unnecessary volume, so more items can be stored in a given space, or transported on a pallet and so on. But it should also reflect the brand image, a luxury watch that retails for thousands of dollars should have a high-quality packaging solution that reflects that value, where a $20 set of screwdrivers would have different packaging expectations, for example. Packaging for both performs the same function, but requires very different experiences, and the best packaging ideas manage to incorporate protection and customer experiences into one.
Image of Packaging Ideas

Packaging Design Inspiration

To gain the inspiration needed to find a new approach for your products, look for packaging design inspiration elsewhere. While the obvious inspiration may be to look at your direct competition, it can be useful to take a different approach. For instance, if you want to provide a high-quality user experience, look to products outside your industry that do the same. Going back to our luxury watches, we can take inspiration from the materials, the colors and the presentation itself.

There are, of course, cost restrictions on any packaging design, but that doesn’t mean they need to feel inexpensive or budget in any way. Well designed cardboard packaging can mimic the wood and metal of high-end watch packaging without the cost or weight, providing a tactile unboxing experience that will have a positive impact on brand image.

With so much of it out there from the most mundane to sheer extravagance, there is packaging design inspiration everywhere you look. By first thinking about the kind of feel you want the packaging to have, you can then choose brands that offer something similar and see how they do it. From there, by adapting materials and styles, you can create new packaging to achieve your goals within any budget.
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Packaging Design Tips

In an ideal world, we could create the most effective, beautiful and memorable packaging for every product, with no restrictions on how it is created. However, whether it be size limits to ensure efficient shipping, compromise for costs or other factors, packaging design is always dictated by outside limitations.

You can still be creative though, here are a few packaging design tips to help you design the best packaging for your products.

A little goes a long way

Consumers expect some level of information on packaging, but too much can overwhelm. Instead, pick out two or three key points at most about the product and highlight them.
Image of information on packaging

Think about transport and storage

Efficiency on transport and storage can save significant costs, so think about how and where products are stored and moved. Just a half an inch less height or width on the package can mean fitting 20 or even 50 more items on a pallet, and over the life of the product range, that can be a huge saving in logistics costs.
Image of lessless height or width of the package

Remember the user experience

Take inspiration from existing packaging of all kinds to create the kind of user experience that fits the brand. Compromises on materials and other aspects for cost reasons can be overcome by well-designed packaging that provides a quality feel for the consumer.
Image of well-designed packaging

Protection is everything

In online retail, few things deliver certain disappointment like a product that is damaged in transit. Sometimes this can be out of your control, but in many cases, effective design that shields the product from shocks could have changed the situation. Think about the vulnerabilities of the product and design packaging that minimizes the risk.
Image of design packaging that minimizes the risk of damage


Packaging design is more than how a product looks on the shelves today, it should be an integral part of the logistics process too. Good design can reduce packed volume, saving costs in logistical transport and storage, while also lowering shipping costs to the customer. It can also protect the product so that it arrives intact too, all while still ensuring that it stands out on a store shelf and provides an unboxing experience that reflects the brand image and customer expectations.
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