There was a time when we rarely thought about the packaging our goods came in because to be honest, it didn’t really make much difference to us.
But nowadays, with the retail industry booming, particularly as a result of the surge in e-commerce – things have changed.
In a competitive market, brands have gone above and beyond to create beautiful packaging and to use this as a marketing tool. In turn, consumers have come to want (and expect) their goods to be properly and attractively packaged.
Not only this but there are now other important considerations to think about – for example, sustainability and the environment.
So as a new business owner, getting your postage and packing right can feel like a minefield, which isn’t something you really want to be stressed about when trying to get your new business off the ground.
So if you’ve recently started a business that involves sending your goods out to customers, this article is for you.
Below, we’re going to share with you some of our top tips for perfecting your packing and shipping strategy, so you can boost your brand and keep your customers coming back for more.
1. Think about your packaging needs
In the early stages of your business, it can be tempting to buy lots of different packaging to try out. However, before you go out and buy loads of products you don’t end up needing, stop for a moment and really think about your packaging needs.
For example, in order to choose the most efficient packaging, whether that’s a bag, box, bubble wrap, etc. you need to ask yourself:
- What am I posting?
- Is it expensive, fragile, large or heavy?
- Will it require extra padding to keep it safe?
- How am I posting my goods?
- What am I charging for postage costs?
- Am I using a courier service or going to the post office?
- Do you want custom packaging made up or will you use generic packaging?
- Are you an eco-conscious brand?
Planning your packaging carefully in this way gives you time to shop around, find the perfect packaging options and ensure that your goods arrive safe and sounds – all without breaking your budget.
And we’re going to look at budgeting and cutting costs in more detail in the next section.
2. Manage your costs effectively
Sticking to a budget and cutting costs wherever you can is crucial when you’re starting up a business. And your postage and packaging is no exception.
As this can range from the very basic, cheaper options all the way up to some pretty expensive custom bags and boxes, it helps to set yourself a budget.
If you want to choose more expensive packaging to impress your customers, this may mean you need to charge them more for postage, so it’s worth keeping this in mind and deciding if this is something you want to do.
Either way, you need to make sure that your packaging is effective, protective and that it doesn’t end up costing you money on your goods.
3. Use your packaging as a marketing tool
Now for some of the more fun stuff.
Your packaging can be a great marketing opportunity. Think about it; your packages are out there with your name and branding on. This can be a relatively low-cost advertising technique, provided you haven’t spent a fortune having the packaging branded.
Not only this, but in today’s digital world, people love to share pictures and reviews of their latest purchases online.
In fact, you may be familiar with the ‘unboxing’ phenomenon that has burst onto the scene in recent years.
This is where people video themselves opening their parcels and share this with their followers online. If they are raving about your beautifully packaged goods to their hundreds or even thousands of followers, that opens you up to a much wider audience.
So this can be a chance to have some real fun and spend some time getting your packaging perfect.
4. Know your audience
The type of packaging best suited to your goods will vary depending on what you sell. It will also vary depending on your audience, so you need to take them into consideration.
For example, are you selling an eco-friendly or all-natural product? If so, it won’t send a great message to put this in a single-use plastic bag and it’s likely that your target audience won’t appreciate that either.
Similarly, if you sell a sleek or luxurious product like makeup or beauty products, your audience might be more enticed by bold, beautiful boxes that look opulent and mirror the product inside.
So it’s not just important to think about what you want your packaging to look like, but also what your target audience will expect from your brand.
5. Go above and beyond
And finally, it’s not just about what the actual packaging looks like. If you want to use more basic bags and boxes to keep costs down, that’s OK! You can add a personal touch in other ways.
Providing you’re not sending out hundreds of parcels a day, why not wrap your goods nicely in tissues paper, add small freebies or even a handwritten note?
These small, personal touches can make a huge difference to the consumer and can help to build your reputation and keep them shopping with you in the future.
Is it time you re-think your packaging?
So as you can see, packaging is more than just a way of transporting your goods. In today’s competitive environment, consumers have come to expect certain standards from brands and many will even base their shopping choices on aspects such as packaging.
Personalised or branded packaging is great if you’ve got the budget. You should also consider those additional little touches and shouting about sustainable or eco-friendly packaging if you use it.
Keeping these tips in mind, you can perfect your postage and packaging strategy and create a loyal customer base that can’t wait to see your parcels coming through their letterbox.