Packaging, like all areas of business, is led by a number of guidelines and best practices that have been gleaned from decades of product packaging which are in place to help businesses leverage off of the success and failures of companies that came before them. In saying so, businesses can ensure their packaging meets and exceeds the standard of packaging according to consumer demands and market trends. While this is the goal, it is not always easy as the right product packaging partner has a significant impact on the success of a company’s product packaging. With so many options available to business owners, the process can be a cumbersome task. However, it does not have to be with the help of reputable comparative resources shedding light on the various product packaging suppliers in your local area. With such a resource, business owners can quickly scan for the most appropriate supplier and find a match that suits their packaging objectives. This will help owners save time and money as well as focus their attention on the specific packaging design.
Alas, design is one of the hardest parts to get right and in order to optimize one’s potential for successful packaging design, a few do’s and don’ts should be considered in the crafting process. Before finalizing your agreement with a reputable product packaging supplier, ensure that you have checked the following boxes which detail what needs to be implemented for your packaging to have a higher potential for return in the competitive consumer market.
Do: Think About Your Consumer
One of the most critical steps in product packaging design is considering your consumer and how they might view the packaging. After all, you are not designing for yourself. Think about how your consumer will perceive your brand after glancing at your product packaging and consider what innovations you could make to curate a more significant packaging experience for the consumer.
Don’t: Forget Your Packaging’s Purpose
Failure to understand the purpose of your packaging is bound to lead to disappointment for both business owners and consumers. Without a clear vision of your packaging’s purpose, you may craft more problems than solutions. Beyond standing out from the competition, your packaging needs to be functional and facilitate the adequate transfer from product to the consumer through safe and appropriate design.
Do: Break the Status Quo
While there is no rule to guide this recommendation, trends are set by those that think outside the box. When approaching your product packaging, develop visionary solutions to consumer problems and craft packaging that helps rather than hinders the consumer unboxing experience. While many companies follow their competitors, you could leverage brand authority through developing packaging that is completely different from your competition.
Don’t: Do Design Over Functionality
While creating novel packaging distinguished from the rest is one way of standing out from the competition, be sure to stand out for the right reasons by always considering functionality first then design. It would not be wise to create a stunning and extraordinary piece of product packaging that does not serve its intended function as this will only frustrate consumers and place question marks over your brand’s design principles.
Do: Play with the Senses
One of the most effective and overlooked steps in creating novel packaging is playing with the senses and considering the shapes and textures of your packaging solutions. For example, consider creating circular packaging when the competition is using rectangular boxes or add a scented stick to your perfume box so that consumers can smell the fragrance before they purchase it. There are endless ways you can leverage shape and texture to stand out from the competition.
Don’t: Include Unnecessary Materials
While playing with the senses is bound to intrigue your consumers, avoid adding unnecessary features to your product packaging that would otherwise distract from the overall consumer experience. An example of this would be providing excess waste in the form of plastics where plastic is not necessarily needed. It is important that you limit the amount of waste produced by your packaging and this leads us to our next point.
Do: Promote Sustainable Practices
Sustainable packaging is a must as it is increasingly demanded by the discerning consumer market. It is imperative that you jump on the bandwagon and begin crafting packaging solutions that meet and exceed the minimum requirements of sustainable packaging. You could consider biodegradable solutions or edible packaging as an addition that will create an appealing consumer experience.
Don’t: Partner with Unsustainable Suppliers
Hand in hand with designing sustainable packaging, it is essential that you partner with packaging suppliers that produce solutions in a sustainable way. There is no point in designing biodegradable packaging if the processes needed to do so result in copious carbon emissions. Doing so would not reduce your company’s carbon footprint and potentially lead to poor consumer perceptions of your brand.
Do: Be Involved in the Process
In order to get packaging design right, it is essential that business owners create a trustworthy and transparent workflow where all contributors are involved and encouraged to make recommendations. By bridging the gap between the design team and the supplier, companies can avoid pitfalls and failures to fulfill the creative brief. The relationships between business and supplier are critical to designing quality packaging.
Don’t: Limit Your Source of Inspiration
Advice is one of the greatest assets a company can leverage for creating brilliant product packaging. The more advice the better as successful packaging is built off the back of previous failures. Be sure to listen to the advice and source inspiration from your team as well as suppliers as there may be solutions unaccounted for and not yet considered.
There you have it, a few packaging design do’s and don’ts to help guide your next project. While these are general rules of thumb, business owners should not be afraid to break the status quo and product novel solutions to set trends for the future of packaging. With these tips in mind, coupled with visionary design thinking, your business could capitalize on the saturated consumer market.