Product packaging is an important facet of a business’s marketing strategy, often being a highly influential factor affecting the consumer’s decision-making process. Traditionally, product packaging was produced to appeal to shoppers visiting brick-and-mortar stores and creative teams had several considerations linked to attracting consumer interest within a physical shop. Today, eCommerce has taken the world by storm and the demand for carefully considered direct-to-consumer (D2C) packaging has become a critical component of brand success.
With more and more shoppers showing an interest in online shopping, businesses are facing new marketing challenges, and the need for models revolving around D2C packaging solutions has become paramount. So, what exactly does D2C refer to? D2C is the process of companies producing products within their own facilities and distributing them directly to consumers through their own channels, whether it be an online store or social media platforms. And, what exactly are the challenges of implementing this approach?
- There are more consumer touchpoints to consider in the D2C approach, creating more room for error.
- D2C shipping costs can be more costly than traditional brick-and-mortar product stocking.
- Transportation of products may lead to breakage, leakage, or spoilage if the packaging does not meet specific shipping criteria.
Despite these challenges, modern businesses continue to meet the demands of D2C packaging production as the benefits far outweigh the problems. In this article, we will outline several ways you can leverage a D2C business model to help your business grow.
Taking advantage of targeted data
While D2C calls for more consumer touchpoints, these touchpoints can be game-changing if done correctly – specifically in the area of data gathering. Through the online shopping process, businesses can gather an enormous amount of information about their consumers. Beyond sign-up forms that supply businesses with the basic information, web-integrated software can be utilized to collect an array of data pertaining to the users that visit one’s ecommerce site. From the amount of time spent on a specific page to the items listed in a consumer’s shopping cart, businesses can use this information to inform their D2C marketing strategies and improve their rates of conversion. An example of this includes offering discounts to consumers who have left their products in their virtual carts for longer than a week. Having access to this data is incredibly powerful as businesses can tailor packaging solutions specific to their consumers, a strong benefit that is not as easily available to business owners when brick-and-mortar stores create separation between the business and consumer.
The power of personalization
The modern consumer is more and more attracted to businesses that make personalization a component of their business model. Business owners can leverage a D2C packaging model to double down on the personalization appeal and set their products apart in the competitive eCommerce landscape. With data accumulated through the D2C approach, creative teams can craft solutions tailored to a business’s audience – whether it be color changes or packaging innovations geared towards responses of existing consumers. But, companies can take personalization one step further by incorporating game-changing packaging solutions in the D2C process. An example is offering several users the opportunity to receive a limited edition gift box. Such consumers could be influential social media gurus with extensive followings businesses are capable of tapping into if these consumers are encouraged to post unboxing videos of them opening their new products. These videos are seen by thousands of people and the personalization of packaging may bring a whole new set of consumers to your online store.
The importance of crafting unique unboxing experiences cannot be overlooked as the process is a critical consumer touchpoint with the potential of building an improved brand image. Consumers receive and share positive unboxing experiences, encouraging their following to do the same. Some incredible personalized packaging examples that incorporate the D2C model to promote beneficial unboxing experiences include Dollar Shave Clubs razer kits and Birchboxes beauty subscription packs. Through tailored solutions and personalized subscription services, these two brands and more are able to tap into their consumer market on a deeper level.
Test, test, test
The benefit of targeting consumers through D2C models is almost always linked back to the accumulation of consumer data during their online shopping experience. This data proves invaluable in the testing process and allows businesses to consistently improve their products and packaging solutions based on monthly data collected through powerful back-end software. The ability to implement constant testing allows companies to quickly find the perfect solution as opposed to waiting until stock within brick-and-mortar stores runs out and companies have processed their findings. Furthermore, including call-to-actions on one’s website encouraging reviews or comments helps businesses quickly identify pain points and problems – leading to solutions being developed rapidly.
Success with sustainability
The use of sustainable materials in product packaging during the D2C approach can save on shipping costs as they are often lighter. Furthermore, the inclusion of sustainable materials is a huge selling point as more and more consumers are directing their attention to brands fighting climate change. The use of sustainable D2C practices can both cut back on costs and attract new audiences, leading to greater chances of brand success in the competitive modern market.
From partnering with reputable packaging suppliers to gathering valuable data on consumers and personalizing packaging to appeal to new audiences to rapidly testing and evolving solutions, it is clear that businesses can benefit and grow from incorporating a D2C packaging business model. From developing a richer online store to crafting unique unboxing experiences, D2C is a powerful eCommerce model that should be considered by all business owners.