Running an E-Commerce Business? Why Packaging Makes a Difference
When you’re running an online business out of your home, you likely have a lot more pressing concerns than the state of your packaging. Are you meeting deadlines for orders? Do you have enough stock on hand to make your shipments? How can you get more clients (and cater to them without hiring help)? The major concerns of managing a business on your own often outweigh the seemingly minute details, but if you’re not thinking about how your packaging can affect your business, then you could be missing out on an opportunity to take your company to the next level. Here’s why attending to the details can make a difference in your big picture.
For one thing, you are a brand. As a brand, you have an image to uphold. Your packaging is part of this image. It is the physical manifestation of your brand. And if you choose to ignore anything that directly affects your brand image, your attitude could have a negative impact on sales. For example, I recently purchased an item from a vendor on Etsy. It arrived in a padded envelope (not too promising, but admittedly, the item was small). However, when I ripped open the envelope, I was extremely surprised by what I found. The ring I had ordered was in a small, cardboard box that was wrapped in a muslin sheath stamped with the vendor logo, then tied with a correspondingly colored ribbon.
The presentation was not only pretty; it also fit into the aesthetic of the indie artist, thereby promoting the brand image even further. The inside of the package was equally neat, with the ring in question wrapped in tissue and resting on a bed of soft cotton. The vendor obviously worked from home, and yet, the package was professionally and thoughtfully put together. In short, the artful presentation of the inside package impressed me and more than made up for the seemingly inadequate outer packaging.
However, it’s not all about presentation. The other aspect of packaging that requires careful consideration is the utility. Let’s take for example the bubble-padding of the envelope used to ship my package. It was unimpressive, but more than adequate to protect the item inside because it was so small and was well-packed in its box. However, such wrapping would not have been appropriate for, say, a set of wine glasses, which would call for a lot more padding (probably molded foam to keep the glasses stationary as well as cushioning in the form of paper, peanuts, bubble wrap, or air pockets). You get the gist. The packaging must be functional as well as aesthetically supportive of your brand image.
Although you may not want to put as much time, effort, and money into your packaging as you would into, say, the actual product, marketing your business, or engaging new clients, you should at least give the matter some consideration. Whether you want to believe it or not, the packaging you use for your products gives customers their first physical impression of your company. So if the product shows up broken because of poor packing, or lackluster wrappings fail to inspire confidence in your brand, you may have lost business for good, regardless of the quality of your product.
Jennifer Kardish writes for Plexpack which offers band sealer, shrink tunnel and many other items for your e-commerce and other packaging needs.
Image source: idreamofletters.blogspot.com