By looking past the 'pretty graphics' we end up finding solutions to key problems that result in creative solutions that make your product stand out! Below are 7 key aspects every product based entrepreneur should consider when approaching packaging design.
If your product is bound to hit store shelves you need to ensure that it stands out when surrounded by your competition.
A useful trick of the trade is to print out (and if needed, construct) a rough rendition of your design concept(s) and place-it on a store shelf beside the competing product. From there ask yourself: Is the key CTA (call to action) large enough? Are the colours visible? Dose it grab your attention as you stroll past the aisle? Are you pulling attention to your product in comparison to your competitors?
On the flip side, if your product is strictly in the e-commerce space you should still use the same method above with a slight modification. Compare your packaging concepts to your competitors product shots and ask yourself the same questions above. Remember online shoppers are still considering visuals when buying, browsing tabs vs. browsing shelves, so make sure (when you’re ready) to get professional photography of your product and its packaging to attract them.
It's likely when packaging your product you prioritize showcasing your logo, colour palette or fancy materials. However don't forget that it has to be able to sell itself without you there to back it.
You may know your product like the back of your hand, and understand its importance in peoples lives, but your buyer's don't. Make sure to spend the time to communicate 'why' your product is the solution; use infographics, iconography, photography or concise wording.
Although people sometimes buy off the principle of what is pretty, or off a brand name, don't leave that to chance. Clearly communicate the solution so they feel compelled to stop, learn more and ultimately buy it.
We'll be the first to admit it — we LOVE packaging that uses fancy materials! Foil, embossing, die-cuts, fancy stocks, friendly alternatives; the list goes on. But make sure to account for the cost of the material too.
This likely goes without saying, but, the more cost effective your materials are the more likely you are able to gain a better profit or provide your product at a better selling price. Therefore make sure to give yourself the space to properly research where to source your materials, as well as consider if a more expensive packaging option is worth the cost. It will give you both the bang for your buck, but can also lead to some crazy cool options you never knew existed.
We can't stress this enough — consider your weight and dimensions of your packaging!
If you are a fellow Canadian you will understand this all too well, but it can be extremely costly to ship a package within the same city, let alone the next province over. Avoid a pricey mistake by thinking how your packaging can be small, light weight, and durable enough to survive shipping all in order to provide low shipping rates that wont deter a user from buying.
Pro Tip: While researching who to ship with, work with the sales representative to fully understand how size and weight will play a factor into pricing. Plus, see how you can take advantage of business rates to save!
Damaged product results in a vicious returning cycle. Aside from the loss of physical money it can sometimes lead to negative reviews or feedback (which is sometimes worse than paying for the return label and sending a new product).
When developing the packaging for your product consider how it's protecting it. Great news is, we are beyond the days of using bubble-wrap; there are several eco-friendly alternatives, as well as packaging that has pre-built in protective measures which prevents the additional cost of another piece of material.
Valuing the time and space needed to work with a packaging designer will yield some incredible results that produce packaging with smart protection in mind.
When someone has received their order and begins to unbox it they are becoming immersed in your brand and are experiencing it, therefore it is crucial that your packaging is durable!
Every part of your packaging is an extension of your brand; think of your packaging like a storefront. When you walk into a store you want it to look clean, put together, intentional and set the tone for the atmosphere. Treating your packaging is no different, ensure that after its traveled to another city, or to the other side of the country, it is arriving as if you had just finished placing the shipping label on it.
The better the experience, the better the review and word of mouth — maintain your existing customer base while also growing it.
Remember, don't be afraid to reach out, ask questions and work with professionals; working with experts means you will have access to knowledge that is invaluable and will help foster success!
When you work with packaging designers, such as Foster Creative, they are naturally attuned on how to best package a product due to years of experience. They know the right questions to ask to ensure your packaging objectives are being met, such as the ones listed above, as well as working with budgets.
Pro Tip: Majority of designers offer complimentary consultations, take advantage of that opportunity to see if they are a great fit for your project needs and budget. (See below for ours!)