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Successfully Sourcing Packaging Materials For Your Business

Packaging materials is one of the most important aspects of your product and branding. Because of this, sourcing the best possible materials is a must; here are a few tips to successfully source packaging materials.

Set a Budget

The first thing you need to do is set a budget. Packaging supplies can get expensive, especially when buying in bulk or something highly customized. Because of this, set a budget first and then find the packaging options that fit within that budget.

Types of Packaging Materials You Need

It is important to note that you need three different types of packaging, and they are all vital for the storage, transportation, and overall look of your product.

Primary

The primary packaging is the packaging that goes directly over your product. This is the packaging that will be displayed in retail stores and on shelves.

Secondary

The secondary packaging layer is used for storing and protecting bulk quantities of products for transportation and storage at retail stores. For example, this would often be described as a case in beverages.  

Tertiary 

Finally, the tertiary packaging is the outermost layer used to protect the cases of the product. This is the type of packaging you will see and use in a factory where mass amounts of product are stored.  

Reusable Packaging Materials

reusable packaging materials

Choosing reusable packaging is a great way to save money and be more environmentally friendly. Many beauty brands, for example, have products sold in bottles, tubs, or tubes that can be refilled when finished.

Reusable packaging saves money in the long run but also allows you to sell something fancier or upmarket, as the money you save can be reinvested.

Branding

Don’t overlook the fact that your packaging is part of your overall branding image. How your logo, barcode, font, etc, looks on the packaging is vital to ensure you convey your brand’s message, and for your product to stand out from the crowd.

For example, selling something very expensive and high-end in a regular cardboard box doesn’t have the same appeal as selling the same product in a luxurious leather box.

Storage/Transport Considerations

Another aspect to remember is how the packaged products will be stored and transported. If you package your products in a large, strangely designed box, it will be difficult for you and retailers to store large amounts of them or display many of them.

You also need to think about how your products will be transported. If you can only fit five in a storage box and only 20 boxes in a truck, that is very little product to transport in one go. Compare this to being able to pack 20 products in one storage box; that is vastly more products being transported in each truck.

Retail Requirements

There are several packaging requirements that you need to fulfill for your product to be sold in-store. You need to display manufacturer information, contact information, ingredients, storage instructions, a barcode, etc.

On top of this, you still need to add your logo, slogan, etc. This means you need a packaging solution that can accommodate all of this information and still look attractive and eye-catching.  

Product Safety 

packaging materials

Depending on what you are packaging and selling, product safety can be a crucial part of your packaging decisions. You need a packaging design and choice that can keep your product secure and prevent it from getting damaged in transport and handling.

You often see colognes and perfumes held in place with a cardboard shell inside of the main box. If it was loose in the box, there is a chance the bottles can be cracked and broken. Therefore, think about your product and how it needs to be protected throughout the supply chain.

Security 

You also need to pay attention to the security aspect of the packaging you choose. It can be very easy to steal your product out of the packaging is there are no security features stopping someone from doing that.

If your product is difficult to open quickly, it may not entirely prevent it from being stolen, but it will allow retailers to know if the product has been tampered with. This is particularly important if you sell foodstuffs, supplements, etc.  

Weight 

While often not a concern for short-haul transportation, the weight of your packaging can influence how much it will cost to transport or ship it. More often than not, the shape, weight, and distance the product is traveling all contribute to the price.

You must look for a balance between a packaging solution that is strong enough to protect your products and one that isn’t so strong and heavy that you end up paying astronomical amounts to transport it.

Customer Experience

Finally, don’t underestimate the power of packaging in the customer experience. An extreme example are NFL season tickets. Many teams will send these tickets in beautiful wooden boxes, music plays when they are opened, there are lights, etc.

While your product clearly doesn’t have to do this, different packaging features can make a product feel more luxurious or high-end, and on the other hand, some features can make it feel cheap.

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