By: David Roberge on April 26th, 2018
How Digital is Influencing Product Packaging Aesthetics
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In the age of the technology boom it's important to take a look at how you bring your products to market. Do you need to consider the boom in e-commerce when it comes to your current packaging designs? Some believe it's necessary depending on your product line and target markets while others are using it as a way to catapult their business by packaging with a new set of eyes and creativity, creating a bond between the consumer and the brand.
How has the digital age influenced product packaging? Here's the latest on how digital is influencing packaging aesthetics and how you can too, with research to back it up!
The Age Of E-commerce And It's Implications For Product Packaging
The internet has changed the world over the past 20 years in almost every aspect of life. The ability to get what you need, when you need it has shaken up the retail world, but has it affected how you should bring your products to market? In some ways, it definitely should be taken into consideration, but for the most part if you have a successful package design now, you don't need to sweat it just yet!
A consumer is not going to care as much about the message that the packaging has on it when buying online, this is true. They will find the messaging they are looking for in the product description on the online storefront. So, how do you make them a repeat buyer on the web without using the package as your main promotional tool? It takes some creativity to think outside of the box, but it can be done. We will discuss this more as we dive into the key factors to consider below.
Keeping up with your consumers' interests is the single most-important factor to consider when reviewing your current package design. Most markets won't need to dive into a secondary package design for their online sales simply because the product is sold online.
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The world of online shopping hasn't swayed the impact that colors used in product packaging have on a consumers intent to purchase. According to the research recently done by the UK contract packager's, WePack, 37% of 650 consumer's said that color provided the most appeal when it comes to product packaging. This includes both online and in-store shopping.
The good news here is that you don't have to re-invent your entire package to suit the interests of online shoppers. Unless you aren't focusing on color to match your consumers interests already, that is. If this is the case, you are potentially missing out on some serious revenue. It takes a little research and a true understanding of your target market to have the most impact on a consumer's decision to purchase your product over another.
If you haven't taken the time to align the color of your packaging to the interests of the consumer that is most apt to have a need for your product you can bet that your competition is. They are gaining the potential customer base that could be yours with a little focus on consumer interests.
It's important to consider the psychology of color when you are researching your target market's interests as well. Colors can convey very different emotions depending on the product and the country it is being marketed in. Keep this in mind if you are selling or sell your products internationally.
Your Supply Chain Matters
Packaging for e-commerce brings with it some challenges for your brands supply chain. Is your current packaging durable enough to protect your goods in transit and at the distribution center? It's of utmost importance to incorporate the different environments your product will encounter in the e-commerce space into your packaging design.
More hands on your products means you should be considering how durable the packaging is and if any alterations should be considered to keep your finished goods protected in transit. Don't forget, your product line won't be sitting on the average store shelf that it used to, either.
From storage to shipping, it will most likely encounter various climates. Does your current retail packaging protect your product from these new environments ? This is especially important consideration for foods and other temperature sensitive products.
Imagery and Texture Matter
In the study mentioned above, the second most-influential factor in a product's packaging design was imagery. 25% of those polled said that imagery most often caught their eye when shopping for different items, both online and offline.
With new technologies in digital and digi-flexo print, the ability to create outstanding, eye-catching graphics on flexible packaging is changing how brands go to market. Along with that, the opportunity make shorter runs thanks to digitally-printed packaging and the demand for personalization and variety make digital print even more appealing to brands with different flavors of product to meet that consumer demand.
The research also found that although texture was not a key concern, men are far more attracted to the feel of packaging than women. Consider how your packaging feels, especially if it is designed for a more masculine market. How can you convey this texture in the online marketplace with no touch sensory? Can you utilize the imagery on your product's packaging to convey this?
Capitalize On The Consumer Experience
It was mentioned at the beginning of this article that it is important to think outside-of-the-box to capture a long-term customer for your brand, but it may also mean looking inside-the-box to maximize your products potential in the online world.. Does packaging mean nothing? Or, does it mean a whole new opportunity?
The answer is best captured in a recent interview with The Atlantic and the editor at Packaging Digest, Lisa Pierce. Packaging isn't as much of a necessity, but an opportunity to create a brand experience and emotional response with your target audience. Your packaging no longer needs to be considered as the primary tool to get a message across about the product within, but it should be utilized to enhance the at-home experience with your product as a whole.
By creating unique and memorable un-boxing experiences, you will be able to captivate your consumer in a whole new way. Consider the way your product sits within the protective packaging it is held in. Is there a way to speak to your target market that you haven't considered with your on-the-shelf package design? It could be as simple as a bold, personal message to your consumer that makes them take a second look and smile. Creativity is key to maximizing your potential with packaging for the online-shopping world.
Download your FREE copy of the Packaging Design Optimization Cheat Sheet to learn more about how you can design your next product package with efficiency!
About David Roberge
I am grateful for my 9 years as part of the outstanding Industrial Packaging team. I was able to hang out with some of the most knowledgeable folks in the packaging industry. I feel even luckier that I was able to share that knowledge with you. I love learning, hiking, and growing people and teams both personally and professionally, and helping companies grow better.