Eastpac’s Complete Guide To e-Commerce Packaging: The Do’s & Don’ts
For customers, the first time they will see your business is when they see your packaging. The is the first physical touchpoint a customer has with your brand. Therefore, e-Commerce packaging plays a key role when it comes to first impressions and building a customer relationship.
Consequently, your packaging is regarded as the silent salesman of your business. Therefore, presentation is key! For the unboxing experience, you have to consider every aspect, from the container to the chosen infill, it is paramount to the creation of a stellar unboxing experience. But also don’t forget, selecting the right e-Commerce packaging is vital to protect your products during transit and to keep business costs down.
So, how do you decide which e-Commerce packaging to use? What’s the best type of container? Which void fill is most appropriate? Is it essential to consider sustainability? These are all important questions. Therefore, we have taken the time to compile all the best products for e-commerce sellers to consider for successful packaging in our complete e-Commerce packaging guide.
Firstly, Why Is e-Commerce Packaging Important?
As we have discussed before, e-Commerce packaging is key to a business’ success – especially now! With the recent pandemic, online shopping is becoming increasingly popular, with a significant number of consumers now ONLY shopping online.
Think about it. What if you received a small item in a MASSIVE box? Or a package you have been excitingly waiting for arrives at your door with bruises and is completely useless. You wouldn’t be happy, would you?
While people laugh about these experiences, they do damage a business’ reputation. Furthermore, they disrupt the unboxing experience of new products and may create negative emotions and feelings towards your brand. Essentially, well thought out, user-centric and quality packaging can significantly boost a business’ bottom line.
How Can e-Commerce Packaging Benefit My Business?
Firstly, the use of protective and sturdy packing materials can minimise both the volume and cost of returns. But most importantly, generate trust and customer loyalty. On top of this, you can increase your brand health by using branded e-Commerce packaging to create a unique unboxing experience. In essence, your e-Commerce packaging needs to fulfil essential functions (such as product protection, cost-effective shipment and safe delivery). But, you can achieve several additional benefits when you know.
That is why we have created our e-commerce packaging guide. Our experts have listed products which will benefit any e-Commerce seller in ensuring successful packaging.
Types Of e-Commerce Packaging:
Most online businesses will package orders in cardboard boxes – they are staple items. Additionally, they are cost-effective and help to protect your products during transit. However, what many people don’t realise is that there are numerous differences between cardboard box grades.
- RIGID BOXES – these are sturdy, and the chances of them collapsing is slim. These boxes are ideal when you are transporting something of high-value.
- CORRUGATED BOXES – Also known as fiberboard boxes or combined board boxes, these are typically used to pack orders or move belongings. This material contains three layers, with the outer layers being flat, while there is a wavy layer stuck in the middle of them. It is within this layer where the strength lies.
- DOUBLE-WALL BOXES – Similar to corrugated boxes, double wall boxes are made with double-layered corrugated walls to ensure nothing falls through the bottom and becomes damaged. Double-wall boxes are one of the most secure types of e-Commerce packaging available to online sellers. Moreover, couriers prefer these boxes due to their durability and resilience.
Kraft paper is paper that is packaging companies scrunch up and use to fill spaces within cardboard boxes to keep product movement to a minimum. Some of the benefits include are that it tends to be inexpensive as well as easy to obtain, making it a popular choice for e-Commerce businesses. On top of this, Kraft paper doesn’t take up much space in a warehouse and can also be recycled to help you minimise waste.
Here at Eastpac, we can also offer a specialist form of paperboard – Anglepost. Anglepost is made from PVA bonded kraft edge boards. These are used to protect the corners of large and palletised goods from strapping and low-impact damage. One of the numerous benefits of the Anglepost system is that they can hold thousands of pounds axially. The increased profile surface area helps to distribute the stacking load for superior results. Furthermore, the Anglepost offers a built-in spring design for excellent side-impact/clamp protection. The material can reduce surface abrasion with our available coatings, designed with painted or delicate areas in mind.
Air Packaging is the newest member of the shipping protection family, and it has undoubtedly made an impact. Recently, we wrote a blog discussing the benefits and outlined what Air Packaging is, check it out here.
Essentially, Air Packaging is a pillow of air that you can inflate to various sizes. Even though they sound simple, they are highly effective. This packaging material offers an innovative protective solution that takes up less storage space and saves money.
Here at Eastpac, we offer a specialist form of air packaging called Ribtec. Ribtec offers you all the benefits of air packaging, but is ideal as a buffer to prevent a hard impact. Available in a wide range of sizes, Ribtec is effective with all different types of product delivery. But if that doesn’t convince you, check out our videos below of our Ribtec air packaging in action.
As there are many different types of void fill, choosing the wrong void fill could have consequences on how well your product survives transit. But, more importantly, if your choice of void fill does not protect the contents inside, it is certain this would harm your brand’s perception. But, the most popular void fill is packaging peanuts.
Packaging Peanuts are mostly made up from polythene foam (also known as Loose Fill) – this void fill certainly falls into the plastic category. Manufacturers and retailers have used Packaging Peanuts for decades. But, due to the alarming news that Styrofoam could be carcinogenic, many companies have begun banning the material.
However, to also stop the pollution of plastics in the ocean, environmentally friendly packaging peanuts – made from material such as corn starch and recycable paper – are also available.
Just like our previous void fill, bubble wrap is one of the most popular packaging supplies. Certainly, a favourite as it can be burst, bubble wrap offers manufacturers and retailers a protective layer for fragile items.
Again, as a result of the overuse of plastic, alternatives to bubble wrap are slowly becoming available. Paper bubble wrap offers the same level of protection but is environmentally friendly. However, due to original bubble wrap popularity, plastics counterparts still dominate the shelves.
We know what you’re thinking. ALL packing tape is the same. It merely seals a box, and that’s it. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. With such a wide variety of different types of tape available, it can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming trying to pick the one best suited to your needs.
In our blog dedicated to tapes (check it out here), we have narrowed down our the different types of tape packaging companies need and their uses! But below, we have provided a summary of each.
- ACRYLIC – Ideal for the majority of standard packaging needs. A budget tape, used on plastic-based surfaces and best used in low volumes. Acrylic adhesives work on a broader temperature range of 0°C to 65°C.
- HOTMELT – Stronger bond than that of Acrylic, especially on cardboard, but works within a smaller temperature range of 3°C to 50°C. Hotmelt tapes are much stickier and are more resistant to stress.
- SOLVENT – A tape with consistent performance over a wide temperature range, and excellent ageing and UV resistance. Solvent-based tapes have the most robust adhesion properties and deal with extreme temperatures and high humidity the best, making it the favourite choice for heavy-duty packaging.
- PRINTED RETAIL– Have you ever seen tapes which feature the word ‘fragile’ or ‘handle with care’? This is a prime example of printed tape. This form of tape is available in pre-printed or in a custom design for you to choose from a variety of ink colours and materials.
- VINYL – High quality, durable, very adhesive tape for sealing any cardboard box. Vinyl tape has more tack and can withstand more tension. It is also quieter when you release it from the roll without the need of a particular variant unlike with polypropylene tape.
- SELF ADHESIVE– Self-adhesive tapes are made from Kraft paper but with an adhesive that is already active when released from the roll. Consequently, making it ideal for quick application.
- WATER ACTIVATED – Also known as gummed paper tape or gummed tape is composed of a starch-based adhesive on a backing made of kraft paper that becomes sticky when moistened. Before it’s wetted, this form of tape is not adhesive, essentially making it easier to work with.
Our newest range of packaging materials – Securapac – offers full protection for your products.
Through our years of experience, we have discovered that businesses should design packaging for speed and efficiency. However, many companies face the dilemma of needing successful packaging that has a minimum risk of damage or breakages to the products in transit. But, we believe that Securapac transit packaging is the perfect solution.
We offer a range of packing materials and accessories, designed with e-Commerce traders in mind. Therefore, every order will arrive with the customer on time, without any damage.
Overall, Eastpac Group is a leading company in the UK’s Packaging market, providing a wide range of protective and supportive packaging materials to e-Commerce and distribution businesses across the United Kingdom. Therefore, if you’re looking for high-quality, speak to an Eastpac expert today.