Are you putting all your effort into improving your digital marketing strategy but your sales aren’t taking off? You don’t know what else to do?
If that’s the situation you are in, read this new trick carefully that we at Doofinder are explaining in order to boost sales: improving the packaging from your online shop.
Although it may seem weird, packaging is a powerful tool to foster your clients’ loyalty and get recurring sales.
Do you have your boxes and cords ready?
What is packaging and why is it so important?
Packaging is no more than the way you wrap your products so that they get to the clients in perfect form. This is a correct definition, but is not the full one. Product packaging is also a way of amazing our clients and leaving a good impression.
There are three different dimensions regarding a product:
- Functional: the usefulness of the product.
- Sensorial: what buyers feel when they have it in their hands.
- Emotional: how the purchase affects them emotionally.
The same is true for packaging; the functional aspect is to make products arrive safely, no more, no less. It’s the remaining two dimensions that we can use to make an impact and to make our customers fall in love
Think about all the packaging options for a wine e-commerce shop.
- What’s the box like?
- What does it feel like?
- What else does it include?
- Do we know whether it’s a wine bottle or a generic package?
All these questions are being answered while buyers open the box. This is the sensorial dimension.
Maybe it is an expensive wine and a lot of work was put into the packaging; that will make clients feel nice and be proud of their purchase. In the best case, they will share a picture of their acquisition on their social networks.
Have a look at this Instagram video—the buyer is talking highly about a wine that he hasn’t even tried yet.
You don’t want to miss this opportunity, do you?
Types of packaging
Although there is no standard classification to be followed, we can distinguish between various types.
Handwritten text, a small gift depending on clients’ likes… We have a lot of information about our clients that they themselves give us… use that information in order to personalize their order!
Imagine an online shop about food with a section on vegan products (that don’t use animal-related products).
When people buy products from that section, a good method for personalization would be to include a vegan lifestyle tip, a sticker, a phrase …, any small detail—no matter how small it is—has a very positive effect.
You can have personalized packaging without any investment.
For online shops that are just starting, it is a great opportunity to improve the emotional dimension at no extra cost. A handwritten thank you note is enough to make a customer feel special.
If your e-commerce deals with thousands of orders, it will obviously be more difficult. It’s tough to imagine some of our clients, such as Tiendanimal or Bebitus, writing a thank you note for every order. :)
2. Ecological and sustainable
Being green is in fashion. With plastic bags being banned in many countries, choosing ecological packaging is no longer an option, but an obligation.
It also gives us an opportunity to reach clients and to improve their experience.
Have a look at how this brand uses sustainable packaging as a commercial argument.
From their website we can get some ideas about sustainable packaging:
- Recycled cardboard: For just a small difference in price to use recycled boxes, you can get a ‘plus’ for sustainability. It is valid for any e-commerce. Some of the big ones, like Apple, are already changing the way they use paper.
- Carbon footprint offset: This is a more advanced topic and it is about donating a small quantity of money in order to make up for CO2 emissions produced by packaging. It is intangible for customers, but it plays into their emotional dimension.
- Plastic-free: Every day, more and more people value the lack of plastic in their packaging. It doesn’t look like a passing craze since it is starting to become a serious matter in terms of legislation.
It is not necessary to change everything about your packaging, but you can take some of these green ideas into account.
You will improve your brand image without any huge effort.
3. Packaging to delight
It is a common thing for luxury products that give more importance to the sensorial and emotional dimensions.
Can you imagine buying a six-pack of beer and getting something like this?
Alongside 3 perfectly aligned bottles, you can find:
- A bottle of water: in another beautiful container.
- Three coasters: so you can enjoy your beer without worrying about table stains.
- Digestive biscuits: in case you feel like snacking while you drink.
- Glitter: you never know if you’ll need it to decorate the room where you are going to enjoy that tasty beer.
And all this sits on top of a warm base of wood shavings.
How many of these products are essential to enjoy a beer? Probably none of them, but they make the act of having a beer seem like a ritual.
It is a premium product and the packaging helps the goal, to delight.
When you buy something, the delivery guy hands it over and you take a first glance at it… What makes you feel better? Having a generic box with nothing or a box with the logo of the company?
Corporate packaging tries to add identity to the package.
From the moment when you receive it, the company is on the customers’ minds. It should be clear what’s inside and immediately evoke the emotions that made them buy the product.
Those few seconds after the moment they receive the package are essential to locking in future sales and for clients to recommend our brand.
If you are just starting out and can’t afford a box with your logo, try including a stamp or a sticker. It is not as glamorous, but it will do the job.
Have you ever opened an Apple product box?
It is difficult to transmit the emotions with words. A box that contains only what you needs, perfectly organized, everything flawless white… you know you are opening a jewel.
They take the concept of minimalism to the max: it has everything it needs and needs everything it has.
The design of the box is studied to the millimeter and it is like that for a reason. Actually, if you ever tried to put everything back in the box, you would probably have difficulties.
Reaching this level is for Apple and perhaps a few others, but it can help you to realize just how important good presentation is to clients.
Advantages and disadvantages of investing in spectacular packaging
We have already seen some, but making an effort here, means that you may obtain 3 vital benefits:
1. An opportunity to add an extra value
We already mentioned it and talked about it when we already mentioned it when we discussed the Mr. Wonderful successful case: people don’t buy products, they buy the experiences that make them feel.
When a client gets a package and it is wrapped in a distinct way, you raise expectations, curiosity, and illusion. A good packaging is enjoyed as another special product characteristic.
2. Greater viralization
Unboxing or unpackaging products is one of the most demanded contents on YouTube. So much so that, according to this BBC article, several youtubers are making a good amount of money out of these videos.
Unboxing a product has become a moment that creates a lot of expectation. If you improve the packaging of your products, your social media will be killing it and you will get more links to foster your online shop SEO.
3. Foster your client loyalty
The main advantage of an original packaging is that you foster client loyalty, which means more recurring sales.
You can think that if your product is a one-time sale it’s not worth it, but that’s not true. A satisfied client can become your brand’s best spokesperson; they could talk to their friends and family about the purchase and about how well the product was presented.
There is no better way of advertising, and at a very attractive price, free.
In the end, it seems that packaging means more than just some paper and 4 cords. ;)
We’ve been talking about the good things about good packaging for a while, but that requires effort. Let’s not forget the other side of the coin.
It is inevitable—everything costs money. If you have an e-commerce shop or any other type of business, you already know that every detail ends up costing more money than you thought it would.
It is true that this is not one of the most expensive items, but buying new boxes, designing them, printing them… it takes both time and money.
It’s all to have satisfied clients.
The main dimension of a package, if you remember well, is the functional one: to make sure the package arrives safely.
If we go crazy about the decoration, we may forget about the main thing.
If the beer bottles that we mentioned before were broken, the coaster would be of no use and there would be nothing to celebrate.
3. Measuring ROI
As with any other marketing strategies, the impact of changing the packaging is not an easy thing to measure.
Imagine that you invested €5000 in redesigning and buying new boxes. Measuring the ROI would be difficult, especially in short term.
As an alternative option, we recommend determining some KPIs, such as the number of times your brand is mentioned on social networks or the number of positive comments or reviews.
We can let our creativity go, but there will always be huge limitations when designing packaging.
- Weight: Any extras will mean added weight and additional shipping costs.
- Space: Like everyone else, you’ll probably try to make the most all the available space.
- Safety: This is always the main goal.
- Third parties: The shipping company has a lot to say about this, since they establish the sizes of the boxes. They may also add wrapping paper with their logo and you will have to negotiate to avoid it.
- Time: This is especially important if you are trying to personalize every order. You cannot ignore new orders just because you are writing a note.
As always, the key is to find balance.
How to package your products so that your clients will buy again
We can’t forget that the main purpose of packaging is protecting your product. If the package is beautiful but the product is broken, we will only lose money with returns. Now that this has been made clear, here you have 5 ideas of how to create a creative package.
1. Improve the box design
This is one of the easiest ways of making your packaging stand out. Just by drawing on the box you can make it look like an old suitcase, a time machine, or anything else you can think of.
A good example is the case of the Trunk Club boxes.
This company has printed on their boxes as if they were suitcases and the clothes you buy are wrapped as if you were going on a trip. There a lot of videos in YouTube of people unboxing these “boxes”.
2. Tell a story with your package
Storytelling is a well used tool since it allow you to create a more emotional connection with your clients.
Draw your product’s, your company’s, or even your client’s story when using the product. This is a very powerful tool. Just think that there are a lot of people who don’t throw pretty boxes away, but instead reuse them for other purposes.
You can achieve that your box is constantly present in your client’s house.
3. Interactive packages
QR codes are a great technology for these purposes. When printing a QR code on the box, we can send the client to our social media page, to a thank-you video, or to a product tutorial.
4. Personalized cards
Every time a product arrives in a client’s house you have the chance of creating a more personal and intimate communication channel.
It is the perfect moment to let them know more about your company and to establish a link.
Although discounts are a powerful weapon, you can also use other strategies. Try sending them more information about the product so they can keep it better or get the best out of it, for example.
This is also a good moment to introduce your team. It is a very nice thing to send a thank-you card signed by all the team members.
5. Play with the elements
A package is not just a box, but the way the products are organized inside the box is also important . Organize all of them, and their accessories in a noteworthy way. Using cords and ribbons will help you fix them to the box so they don’t fall.
As we have seen before, another important point is using recycled material, bio-friendly companies win extra points for a lot of people.
6. Use mockups or images from the shop
A mockup is a virtual recreation of how the package will be. If you have worked on great packaging but are still waiting for powerful pictures, use these recreations.
Add them to the Product Pictures Gallery so clients will know what it will be like when they receive the product.
But be careful not to go overboard with the recreation and make it look better than what it really is. It’s always better when reality exceeds expectations.
Examples of original packaging
Are you looking for ideas? Here you have some ideas from companies that really made an effort.
There are many ways of presenting a T-shirt, so why wouldn’t you roll it up inside a coffee mug? The packaging for online shops selling clothes is typically quite good.
If you buy glasses, you always need to know where to put them :)
These are packages from Incase for their briefcases, bags, and computer cases. Brand image from the very first moment.
If your corporative color is turquoise blue, your box will be turquoise blue.
Do you already have original packaging ideas?
We hope we’ve helped you to make the best choices when it comes to choosing how your products will make their way to your clients.
Remember that balance is key—don’t overdo it with a package that could bring you more problems than advantages, but nourish the first contact you have with those buying your products.
That way you are sure to have many more sales!