You can't always get what you want, as the saying goes.
But insights gleaned from new packaging reports show that both B2C and B2B customers are making how they receive product shipments (and in what format/material) a top priority. This means businesses can't simply rely on the value of their products alone - they also have to make their shipping and packing materials a value-add for their customers. In short, they are getting what they want.
Today's design, cutting and display tools have revolutionized the capabilities of packaging, taking cardboard and plastic box considerations from the warehouse all the way to the boardroom. Companies that invest more heavily in innovative and unique packaging solutions stand a better chance at connecting with customers in a meaningful way, which can activate brand identity and customer loyalty.
At the heart of these new industry demands are customization and versatility.
Ready for retail from start to finish
If you run an e-commerce business, or really any type of company that sells packaged retail products, product handling, shipping and delivery is critical.
The same way a late delivery leads to unhappy customers, a package that is damaged, oddly sized or visually unappealing can leave shoppers with a bad taste in their mouths. The worst part is that these are the very people you should be targeting and re-targeting - turning them away directly inhibits your bottom line.
PrintingNews noted that creative retail designs are becoming paramount in the chase to earn larger market share. In some instances, companies are crafting boxes that double as floor displays, which means they gain twice the value out of each piece of material.
"Think of every package as a brand advocate, as a KPI."
In another example, T-shirts delivered via cardboard boxes can be designed using corrugated materials that unfold after unpackaging and can then be used as clothes hangers - now that's a plus for the consumer!
These sorts of advancements are driven by customer demands and creative minds behind the scenes. But even more so, the technology to bring these types of packaging to fruition are already in ready use.
Even smaller printers are capable of producing custom sizing and designs - it's just a matter of having the right equipment to do so. Cutters from AirMark take much of the manual work out of printing and design, and provide the accuracy and speed needed to pump out units as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Packaging innovation seeps into every market
Another key point to understand about recent packaging trends is that even the smallest, most niche of markets are being invaded by new technology, consumer demands and product quality.
Customized products can be made at the touch of a button by intuitive controls, and businesses can run effectively without much physical investment in storefronts, advertising or labor. What this creates is a market that relies on newer business models.
For instance, social media campaigns, influencer marketing, and interactive email blasts can do much of the legwork that companies traditionally did in-house. Better yet, many of these business functions are free and easy to conduct. Plus, they have the capacity to reach more consumers.
With this level of disruption it can be inherently difficult to interact with customers organically and at the scale at which you please. But packaging provides the perfect manner in which to overcome this challenge.
Think of every package as a brand advocate, as a KPI. Every touchpoint with customers should provide rewards beyond just the dollar amount associated with the product sale. Will this customer appreciate the care of the box? Does the package provide additional brand information? What is different about the utility of the material? Does the packing make customers want to purchase more or tell their friends and family?
These sorts of questions cannot be overlooked, even for small startups or entrepreneurs selling highly niche products to a tiny segment of the population. One packaging decision can make the world of difference, and it all comes down to having the customization tools to make that decision.
AirMark's vinyl, printer and flatbed cutters utilize the most advanced and versatile technologies for every cutting need. Whether it's tangential modules, optical positioning or eco-friendly thermal printing (the list goes on), AirMark provides the machinery for jobs of every kind.
Partnering with the industry-leading printing partner means taking the next step in your company's development. Contact us today.