When you are running a product based business often it really comes down to the finer details in order to stay competitive and relevant.
We talk a lot about building a great website, how to market your products and so on, but what about how to package them?
Your shipping packaging will be the first thing your customers see, why not make it something exciting? Why not make them feel that they have purchased something special?
First impressions count, so use your packaging as an opportunity to squeeze every last chance to make a connection with your customer. (But of course, don’t forget to also ensure that your packaging is safe and secure so your products arrive in perfect condition.)
Here are 5 ways you can update your shipping packaging to resonate with your brand:
1.) Custom Shipping Boxes
There are plenty of services out there that will create a custom shipping box with your company’s logo on it. This is a great option, especially if you are aiming to establish and build your brand.
When customers see your logo on a box, they instantly identify with your brand and your company. It also serves as a great reminder and marketing tool- the more your logo is out there, the more opportunities you create.
The shape, colour and size of your box is also important as it all sends a message about your company. Think about what image will fit your company and what impression you want to make and then choose your design accordingly.
For example, if you run a subscription service, the most popular box of choice is a top fold box. These boxes look elegant, are easy to open and offer a range of options such as inner dividers.
2.) Custom Shipping Bags
This is another great way to get your logo out there while offering a competitive edge. Packaging in gift bags is not common as it can be expensive, however it can definitely help your product to stand out from the crowd.
Bags also look far more sophisticated and fancy than a box and would be a perfect choice if you were selling high end products like skin creams, jewellery or items that are commonly given as gifts.
There are many services out there that can package your products into a custom bag and even stuff it with tissue paper and fix a custom bow. Again, it really all depends on what image you want to create.
Having high end packaging like this also enhances the perceived value of your product and can definitely help your customers feel special.
3.) Packing Material
Choosing the perfect packing material comes down to what type of product you are shipping and what message you want to convey to your customer.
For example, if you pride yourself on being an eco-friendly company, the last thing you want to do is send your products with copious amounts of un-recycled paper, plastic and other packing material.
Alternatively, if you make products for children or animals, you want to ensure that your packing material is safe and non-toxic.
Packing peanuts are often a good choice as they are made with corn starch and are biodegradable. They are also non toxic and can be instantly dissolved in water.
Another important thing to remember here is practicality. There is nothing worse than having your products arrived damaged or broken. Ensuring that your packing materials are safe and your products are well protected will definitely save you in the long run and increase customer satisfaction.
4.) Shipping Tape
While regular shipping tape works fine, if you really want to go one step above and beyond the competition, why not use your own personalised tape?
Having your own branded shipping tape not only helps your company to stay fresh in your customers mind, but it can also help to bring your finished packaged together so it looks appealing.
There are select services that can create custom tape for your company in a different array of colours and sizes. Again, choose what works best for your brand and the image you are trying to achieve.
It also goes without saying that your shipping tape should be thick, strong and secure to ensure that your products arrive to your customers in good shape. No customer wants to feel that their package was opened or tampered with.
Instead of just throwing in a plain piece of white paper with your customers billing information on it, try personalise your receipts and invoices and use them as a way to connect with your customers.
You can do this by writing a personalised message, giving them instructions on how to use their products or offering some type of gift as a thank you for their purchase.
Get creative here and experiment with using glossy paper, thick card or designer paper. Most high end fashion stores wrap their receipts in a beautifully crafted envelope which is then sealed with a branded stamp. This will really help your customers to feel extra special and can increase the perceived value of your product.
Everyone also loves freebies, so this would also be an excellent time to throw in samples of similar products or send some type of newsletter that encourages them to sign up to your email list.
The options with this one are endless, but time and time again, studies have shown that the more personalised you can get with your business, the more customers are likely to return.
While all of these custom shipping options sound like a fantastic idea, you are probably wondering how much this will all cost your business and if it is worth making the investment.
That is something only your company can decide, however there have been numerous studies that have supported using branded packaging as a way to increase customer retention.
One mid-level sized skin care company that offered a monthly subscription service decided to test two different types of packaging.
The first was a plain brown box with standard shipping tape and the jar of cream was wrapped in a bubble mailer. This cost the company around $2.00.
The second was a white and blue box, which matched the skin cream jars and had a logo on it. The creams inside were also wrapped in a light blue organza bag and secured with a bow. This option cost the company around $5.00
They found that the customers who received the branded and more expensive packaging were more likely to retain their subscription by up to 15%. They also found that customer satisfaction was higher and customers were more likely to give a positive review.
This in turn, helped the company to increase their revenue and ROI.
So, why not give it a go? Update your shipping to reflect your brand and see if it can help you increase customer retention, satisfaction and sales.